“You’re going to hear me say two things, ‘Watch the tail,’ and ‘You’re working yarn,’” said Nicole Christensen to her Knitting Camp students.
The Knitting Camp for kids ages 7 to 12 is just one of the many Newtown Parks and Recreation summer programs. The camp ran from Monday, June 23, to Friday, June 27.
Kids who took the camp picked out their own color yarn, learned how to put stitches on their needles, and were taught how to cast on.
“Today’s the hardest part,” said Ms Christensen on Monday. “Casting on is harder than knitting, but whether you’re making a fancy sweater or a simple scarf, you must learn how to cast on.”
The main project of the class was to knit a scarf. Although the class members varied in knitting experience, Ms Christensen promised that every student would have a finished project by the last class.
“Knitting isn’t a race and isn’t a sport. It’s an art. It’s relaxing and should be done at your own pace,” said Ms Christensen. “Don’t be tensed or it’ll show up in your knitting scarf. Be relaxed and breathe!”
Although students learned about the different types of yarn and needles throughout the week, Ms Christensen said the biggest thing she taught the kids about knitting was that they were the bosses of the yarn. Although some students got a bit frustrated when first learning to knit, Ms Christensen made it clear that she had been knitting for years and could help with any problem a student had when knitting.
“There’s nothing you can do to the yarn that I can’t fix,” she said.
Ms Christensen teaches a number of knitting classes from young children to great-grandmothers. She has taught classes for six or seven years and teaches private knitting lessons all year long. Her daughter, Audrey, will enter the seventh grade in the fall and is also an experienced sewer.
“By fourth grade she could knit, and she would go to classes with me and help adults learn to sew,” said Ms Christensen. During the week of the summer knitting camp, Audrey helped her mother teach kids how to knit.
Each camp day, students were asked to take a break where they would enjoy a snack and drink provided by Ms Christensen. After the snack there would be a craft and a game. For the first craft of the camp, students made their own knitting bags to put their materials in. Students were able to keep these bags and their materials after the week was over.
The knitting camp was an interactive class where kids were able to talk, share stories, and learn about each other.
“The first class you may not know each other,” said Ms Christensen, “but by the last class, you will all be buddies!”
For more information about Newtown Parks & Recreation summer programs call 203-270-4340.