|Photo from visualphotos.com|
In August, while sitting on the beach, I got a call from the director of our neighborhood's community center. Beth wanted to know if I would teach a knitting class, just knit stitch and then purl... it should be easy right? Being one who doesn't seem to be able to say no... I accepted the invitation. I would be teaching a class of about ten students, and the sessions would last for one hour over the course of seven weeks.
|The Last Knit...Cute short film about knitting...|
I have been knitting like a fiend for the past four years. Before that, I knit in spurts on garter stitch scarves made with novelty yarns. Now, thanks to Ravelry and an inner drive, I attempt many things and share the success or frustration with online knitter friends. No one in my social circle knits; in fact no one in my circle can understand why I love it so much.
I had no one to use as a sounding board as I thought about where to begin. I tried to recall what steps I myself took to resurrect my knowledge of knits and purls. I had been taught to knit when I was around eight years old, but I needed a recap on what to do, so I refreshed my skills by getting a book and following the diagrams. The book that I found so very helpful is this...
|Knitting the Easy Way|
About three weeks before the sessions were to begin, I did some sleuthing on how one would actually teach knitting. What I found in my Google search was a great resource at the Craft Yarn Council site.
|Each one, teach two!|
They have a challenge where they ask knitters and crocheters to consider teaching two friends in order to spread the craft. They give lesson plans, illustrations, and certificates of completion. They have a tab on their home page for learning to knit that gives line drawings of the garter stitch, purl, casting on and off. The instructor can even register to win prizes for spreading the love of knit and crochet. They offer a course that you can take in person or through correspondence that, upon completion qualifies you as a certified instructor.
So, for the class, I made a brief tip sheet. I packed up my MacBook, I brought needles and skeins of worsted weight yarn for them to begin with. I brought some items I had made to inspire them. I was nervous, because I had no idea how I would teach a large group if we had a lot of people sign up. But my worries were for nothing....
Two women arrived for the first session. After introducing myself and asking them about their fiber experiences, I showed them the wonders of Ravelry and urged them to join. I explained how they could go to YouTube if they needed help in the time between classes. I also counseled them that learning to knit takes patience and persistence.
So I started them off by doing a cable cast on. I had been advised that they would need this skill if they wanted to start over during the time between classes. One woman had taken a knitting class about a year ago and she was getting on fairly well. My other student had trouble holding the needles and following my example. I am anxious to see how she is doing when we meet again on Wednesday night.
So are you up to the challenge of teaching two friends to knit?
Have you any tips you can share with me on strategies you have used while teaching?
Perhaps you have a favorite YouTube video or book to share with me?
My next lesson will be covering the info on a yarn label and how to follow a pattern.
We meet Wednesday night; lend me a hand if you have tips to share.