Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Little knit wits!

Knitting is big with the urban set these days, so who can blame it when our daughters and sons want to get into the action? Did you know that knitting is excellent for developing hand/eye coordination, math skills, and spacial and geometric senses? It can also be used to calm anxious children (and parents!) and is taught worldwide in Waldorf Schools. And, since it helps the right (intuitive, emotional) and left (cognitive, analytical) sides of our brain communicate, it can actually help your kids become better readers.

Think your kids are too young? Maybe not. When I was too small to handle needles, I learned how to finger knit, which is easy, fun, and a great introduction to the addictive world of fiber arts. Later on, my mother taught me to knit "continental-style" and crochet like my Pennsylvania Dutch grandmother, and now my sister and I both carry on our family's warm tradition this way.

Try out these great online knitting resources:

knitty.com, easily the best known (and best!) free online knitting magazine, offering cool reviews, articles (like the one above on finger knitting), and patterns ranging from easy to super-duper hard.

ravelry.com, an online knit and crochet community, has more fun patterns and excellent message boards, plus an online stash* organizer.

knittinghelp.com has videos and step-by-step instructions.

Of course, you can always come in to UKP for one of our knit sets, knitting books, or run over to our neighbor Hilltop Yarn for supplies!

*That's knit slang for "big pile of yarn".

Photo courtesy of Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

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