This article focuses on knitting for kids, how to teach kids to knit, and which products you can purchase to inspire and aide in teaching children.
Why Should Kids Learn To Knit
In the most simple terms, knitting is really just looping yarn together using needles. But if you want to get more philosophical about it, knitting is a lot like life. Teaching kids to knit (or learning to knit together with them, as the case may be) can help them practice patience, inspire creativity and maybe even learn a little math along the way.
A lot of things in life are forgiving of mistakes, but knitting isn’t one of them. Fortunately, if something goes wrong, a knitter does what we all do in life when things go awry: start over, or keep going down the new, unplanned path.
As a knitter grows in experience, they’ll learn to analyze their work to fix mistakes, learn to follow and even write their own knitting patterns, and will come to yearn for the sweet success of a finished product after hours of work.
Should You Teach Kids How To Knit or Crochet?
It doesn’t matter if you start out with knitting or crocheting, just take a look at which works for you. Those who prefer one over the other will say that their chosen art form was easier to learn and is more versatile, but they’re both pretty equal in those respects.
Knitting may be time-consuming but tends to have more ways of combining stitches to make cool patterns like cables. Knitting is more for clothes, while crocheting is more for decorative items. Both, however, can be used in any way you and your kids can imagine.
For this article, we’re going to stick to knitting, but I’ll include some products at the end that teach you specifically how to crochet.
In the olden days, the only way to learn to knit was to find someone who already knew, and hope that they were willing and able to teach you. These days, technology is a helpful assistant teacher. While teaching a kid to knit is a great bonding experience, there’s no reason not to employ a little help from YouTube if you need it.
Where To Start
You’re not going to start out doing crazy knit patterns, but with practice, practice, practice your kids will get there. The trick to knitting is to have a ton of patience, and making sure that they don’t expect to knit perfectly overnight.
Almost every knitter starts out with scarves, then heads towards hats and more complicated projects like socks and gloves.
Kids might find knitting a scarf kind of boring, especially if they live in a warmer climate year-round. Consider having them start with a blanket for their doll or action figure. If that’s not going to fly then, how about a simple bracelet? You could even call them superpower bracelets. The whole point is to get them started and practicing the craft. I suggest something small and quick to finish so that they can quickly see the fruits of their labor.
Keep using videos as tutorials if you need to, or just let kids go wild with their own knitting experiments. Eventually, they’ll get to the point when they’ll want to use patterns. There’s a lot you need to know when you learn to read a pattern, like the difference between yarn types and how to create a special stitch used in the pattern. It can sometimes seem like knitting patterns are written in an alien language.
Buck up – you can still use YouTube to help with reading your knitting pattern. If the pattern involves a particularly confusing stitch, just type it into Google or YouTube and watch a pro execute it. Pause, rewind, watch it over and over until you and your kids get the hang of it. For a pattern example, check out this free pattern for baby Yoda.
For a fantastic user-based knitting pattern resource, check out Ravelry.com. It’s worth signing up.
Knitting Projects and Accessories
Finger knitting is the perfect place to start with children who are young and don’t like to sit still for too long.
This book is the perfect introduction for those of you who are looking for projects to do with your kids.
Yes, this will be the only book you need to get started. Easy methods are taught in the beginning and fun projects fill the rest of the pages.
If your children are past the age of learning how to knit with their fingers and are ready to use to needles then My First Knitting Book is the perfect place to start. Filled with projects and tips for little hands, this book will be a joy to bond over as your little one begins their new hobby.
These cute 7-inch needles are wonderful starters for kids that are excited to learn knitting. These needles are wooden not metal. You might want to have an extra metal on hand just in case they prefer one over the other.
We’re huge fans of starter kits and this knitting one serves as a wonderful introduction for the younger generation. It’s important to get your kids excited about hobbies, and this kit’s low price point makes it a cheap purchase for starting the hobby.
This book is perfect for kids who have begun to master knitting and probably have a year or two of experience behind them. I highly suggest this book as a resource for making friends and family holiday gifts. Teaching your child that making something is much more meaningful than simply purchasing a present is a great lesson.
This official Harry Potter knitting book is filled with 25 patterns that feature clothing, home projects, and decor.
This book is filled with movie accuracy that you will appreciate but also manages to have patterns with varying degrees of difficulty. Based on the reviews this book would be best for children that have already started knitting, definitely not a starter pack item.