Did ya Mama never teach you?

17/02/2016 · 4 comments

in Craft,Crochet,My Books

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I have never expected Little B to be interested in crochet or knitting. The poor child is surrounded by it at home. Indeed he seems far more interested in gallivanting about in the garden or making some silent Ninja surprise attack. However, at the end of our half term week we popped in to see my friends at Black Sheep Wools. There were a number of little plans to hatch and B had to come along for the ride. When Sara and Lesley met him they asked if he could knit or crochet. ‘No’, he replied confidently. What followed was some cheerful banter and teasing of his mother, who had singularly failed to pass on her skills to her son. Very quickly we settled down to our chatter and an excellent lunch with delicious cake. B was very happy.

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But something must have stuck. By Saturday evening he was inquiring if he could borrow some wool and have his own crochet hook. I suggested that he picked out a colour from the enormous stash and found a 4mm hook for him. I taught him how to make a chain and how to hold the hook and yarn – he was away. Quickly he felt satisfied he had mastered the basics and wanted to add some stitches. I worked the first row of the foundation chain. (The trickiest part for any project). He then took over with double crochet on row two.

The progress was very frustrating for him. I had made the error of allowing him to pursue his first colour choice of dark blue. The stitches were hard to discern in the evening light and the yarn and hook were way too fine for a beginner.

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In addition perhaps sitting at the elbow of his mother was not really how B wanted to learn. Recently I have been reflecting that in the tough job of parenting perhaps I should look at the clues which are found in us to find the keys to motivating and inspiring our child. When tackling a problem or learning a new skill. I have a preference for self-directed learning. Sitting quietly in a corner, alone, undisturbed. Give me my own space and silence and I will be much quicker and much more focused. A little lightbulb went off in my head. I reached for an excellent book by my friend Monty Knits, Claire Montgomerie, Crochet for Children. I presented B with the book and he was delighted. He headed off to bed to examine the photographs and descriptions. When we went to bed, we peeped our heads around the door, the book was found flung open amongst the Beano and the Guinness Book of Records.

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Bursting with new information and skills, there was no stopping B on Sunday. By this time I had come to my senses and found a couple of chunky yarns for him to choose and a far more manageable 5mm hook. Progress was far less frustrating for him. With a lighter yarn he could see where to put the hook and made fewer mistakes. In a couple of hours a rather impressive small blanket was created for his favourite Penguin. He was insistent that the design incorportated stripes as the book had shown him how to change colour. This just amused me no end.

I was simply required for a little advice or rectifying a small mistake. ‘It is helpful to have you here Mummy, but the book is far more instructive’. Enough said.

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