Thursday, September 11, 2008

Knitting is so much more than just scarves..

In an interview with Meg Swansen, daughter of the late, great Elizabeth Zimmermann, Meg describes the early introduction to knitting her children had while attending a Waldorf School:

KBTH: You have mentioned that you sent your children to Waldorf schools. Part of
the Waldorf curriculum is to teach the students to knit at a young age. What do
you think that knitting has to teach us? What has knitting taught you?
The founder of the Waldorf system, Rudolph Steiner, believed handknitting could
be responsible for teaching positive, useful and even essential skills: manual
dexterity, math, hand/eye co-ordination and intellectual development in general
- not to mention artistic creativity. I would list all of the above for myself,
plus the additional benefits of personal satisfaction and enormous comfort.*

I am so happy to hear that children of all ages and sexes are being exposed to knitting. When I read articles about knitting and it's therapeutic properties for children with anxiety, dexterity issues, and problems with math and problem solving, I immediately sought to learn and teach knitting to my Asperger's Syndrome and learning disabled (dyslexia, ADHD, & Auditory Processing Disorder) son who was dealing with all of the above issues. I learned to knit and taught Brian to knit and it HAS helped him with all of the issues in some way. Of course, even certain family members have ridiculed me and humiliated Brian for learning these "girly" arts (knitting, sewing). But really - I could care less. Because honestly, if you're not willing to put aside your pride and explore every opportunity to help your child, then YOU should be the one to be ridiculed. And my son and I not only have a real bond over these simple crafts, but he genuinely enjoys creating and making things for others. I guess you can say that knitting has touched our lives in a unique way. And thank God it has.



  1. Bravo! I think you are right on about setting aside your pride. It is a caring mother who will seek for alternatives or accompaniments to the usually medicinal therapy. It is hard to silence the criticism of others who feel they need to give you their two cents on parenting. You are an inspiring mother and I know you have impacted your son's future in a very positive manner. Great Job!

  2. i love your blog, visit my blog

  3. I pop in now and again and read your blog. i think you are a wonderful mother who is willing to do whatever it takes to help your son/daughter/family to progress.

    As far as I know the history of knitting started with men doing the knitting on fishing boats and in the trenches etc to make useful and warm clothing. Maybe you could get a book at the library about the history of knitting and educated the doubters in your family.


  4. I also read in the Harlot's book that knitting began with men. Thanks for the lovely compliment! :)


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