We had another great meeting this week! More beginners showed up and almost everyone has gotten their own knitting needles and supplies so they can practice at home. I was very grateful to have one of my colleagues drop in to help. She helped some of the beginners with their slip knots and casting on.
We watched more of The Complete Beginner's Guide to KnittingDVD to help learn the knit stitch. It was nice that it covered both English and Continental knitting on the video. I knit English style (pick and throw), but I had a left-handed student that I encouraged to look at both ways and do what was most comfortable for her. I think she ended up doing a little of both styles! Whatever works... *smile*
We talked more about the upcoming Bearcat Carnival fundraiser. We will be selling handmade scarves again, so that's what many of the returning kids worked on. We actually have many left over from last year, so I think we'll be o.k. on that front. We found that small items that children could buy on their own with their tickets did well last year, so one of my students came up with the idea to make pom-pom pens. She is going to wrap pens with yarn and top them with a pom-pom. I was really impressed by her initiative! She said her mom would get the pens, she just needed yarn from me and she would work on them at home. I can't wait to see them!
Our new activity at the carnival will be the "Teddy Bear Factory." I found a website that offers wholesale unstuffed animal kits. I ordered 40 bears for our booth. For $10, children can stuff their own bear and complete a birth certificate. When done, they can select a handmade scarf for their bear (that we will make). We'll also will give families the option to make a bear for charity and donate it to Kosair Children's Hospital here in Louisville. I think it will be a fun activity and I'm eager to see if it does well!
Stitch for a Cause is off to a great start this year! There was a great turn out on Wednesday at our table at the school's Extra-curricular Fair and about 35 kids signed up.
Our first meeting was Friday and about 18 kids were there. Our meeting time conflicts with some sports practices, so we should have more joining as we get closer to the end of the season.
At our first meeting I always try to impress on the everyone WHY we are here. We have a lot of fun, but sometimes it's nice to remind ourselves that we are a community service group and our whole purpose it to help and make others feel better through the skills of our hands. Having been a NICU parent, I feel this deeply and shared my thoughts with the kids. It doesn't matter if their little preemie hat is slightly misshapen or has one or two (or three) dropped stitches. Someone will receive it and know that someone else was thinking of them and wishing them well. That's why we do this.
After my sermon, we split up and the people that could already knit, got working on some scarves for Bearcat Carnival. I tried something new this year with my beginners.
I bought a DVD called The Complete Beginner's Guide to Knitting. I gave all my beginners a light colored ball of yarn and some knitting needles and sat them down in front of the SmartBoard to watch the lesson on Casting On. Several experienced students were scattered with them, to one of whom I gave the remote control. I told the group that we were going to try this and that I thought the instruction of the DVD was very clear and the nice thing was that it could be paused and replayed as many times as necessary.
It worked o.k., but I may need to tweak things a little. The group was a little big and I probably need to assign more kids as helpers. Overall, it was good and I am glad we have an extra teaching tool. The DVD covers knitting, purling, increases, decreases, binding off, and finishing too, so I think the kids will have lots to learn this year!
Stitch for a Cause is a community service project at Kentucky Country Day School in Louisville, Kentucky.
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