The Inaugural Knitting Club.

Well this was the week, my fellow yarn-addicts. We had our first knitting club session at school. Obviously it is unethical for me to put photos of the children I work with on here so I didn’t take any this week, however I am considering taking some of their busy hands at work in weeks to come and perhaps some of their wonderful wip’s or finished items. Have some photos of my knitted bunting for eye candy instead!

I was very unsure how it would go before hand. I knew there were a handful of girls who could already knit but I didn’t know what skills the others had. I had visions of us running around like headless chickens, trying to teach 20 kids at once!! The children had been told to bring some needles and yarn with them and, of the twenty-four who originally showed an interest, ten forgot. This was fortunate for us though, as we had a nice table of eight or so who could knit quite confidently and another table of about six who had never knit before. There were four adults, including myself, with varying levels of experience.

Myself and another colleague (who I think has more experience than me) could cast on (so glad I practiced it now!) and another could do it after watching, so we got casting on for the complete beginners and started teaching them the basic knit stitch. The half hour flew past but they all got started and went off to practice at home. Hopefully they can remember what to do and/or have an adult at home to help them.

The more confident knitters had all brought their own knitting that they were already working on, so they sat down and got stuck in quite happily with no problems.

I think this is how it is going to be for the next few weeks, until our beginners become more confident, have learned the basics and we can move onto an actual project. There’s the bunting I have devised and I remember making an owl at school which was basically a long rectangle folded over, sides sewed up, stuffed and decorated. One of my colleagues had brought a simple teddy glove puppet that she had knitted which is another potential project. I shall have a surf around the web for other ideas. I am going to have to practice my casting off because I can’t remember that very well yet and I might make an owl to show them. We are putting out a request to parents for unwanted needles and yarn, and we are hoping to get some funds for supplies too.

My worry now is that they come back next week with a big tangled mess because it has all gone wrong, poor things. And also that the other ten remember to come!!!

Now I need to ask for help from you clever knitters out there…

Firstly…. what on earth can you do to rescue dropped stitches that have disappeared down the rows?? Is there anything other than pulling out all the rows?? I’m sure it will happen sooner or later.

Secondly… do you have any other ideas for very simple projects they could make?? Obviously a straightforward scarf is a possibility and we have considered making blanket squares for charity. Bear in mind, they only know one stitch and there needs to be none/minimal very basic increasing and decreasing. Tough call eh??

Looking forward to your ideas and advice and thank you in advance my friends. May you have a yarny weekend!!

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10 thoughts on “The Inaugural Knitting Club.

  1. I don’t think I could teach anyone how to knit. My skills balance on a knife/needle edge! You must have a lot of patience 🙂
    Will you teach them to purl?
    If so then it’s worth checking Ravelry for dishcloth patterns that pick out a shape just by knitting and purling. The kids would have to count, but that should be as complex as it gets. Alternatively, basing something on this could be good – https://web.archive.org/web/20140409120922/http://www.petitepurls.com/Fall09/fall2009_anything.html
    it’s pretty much as you said, a stockinette square, folded. The icord could be replaced with ribbon and beads it’s it’s too fiddly (for arms and legs) or even one of those French knitting dolls, maybe?

    • Those are great…. Loads of room for personalising them, and yes, similar to my owl. We probably will teach them to purl once they have mastered knitting! Thank you 😄😄

  2. You can use a crochet hook to rescue a stitch that has been dropped a few rows back. It’s fiddly. You hook the vertical strand through the dropped loop and repeat, slowly!

  3. My mum taught us all to knit using plastic covered wire. When it got all tangled up and stitches dropped she had lots of pot scourers. Also in the doctors’ surgeries here there is a box of knitting that you can pick up and add to as you’re waiting. When it gets big enough whoever is the coordinator sews all the squares together to make a blanket to give to someone who needs it. They could make phone or iPad covers as they are rectangular and can be kept for themselves of given as gifts.
    Kate Worrall

  4. You use a crochet hook to knit the stitches up the ladder. Or can use a knitting needle though it’s trickier.

    Try getting hold of the Ladybird book of Knitting, often sold on EBay as they might be ‘vintage’ now but do have a range of simple projects for different abilities. I bet the library would have knitting with children books too. Off the top of my head: scarves for teddies for younger sibs, bookmarks (try knitting with sparkley or variegated yarns) headbands for them to wear. I reckon Pinterest has ideas too. A friend was saying she’s using it for school planning ideas lots right now.

    20:4 sounds too many children, I’d stick with 10 personally as a 2:1 ratio is probably more manageable, particularly if you want to challenge the more able knitters with trickier projects. It sounds fab though, I’m looking forward to more updates.

    • Oooo thanks. I’m thinking of putting a folder of ideas together for them now. I reckon 24 is too many too. Sadly we didn’t do it this Thursday as a couple of staff members were out on training 😦

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