There are a couple of different ways to go about teaching kids to knit. If you would like to teach younger kids, you might want to start with French or finger knitting because they are much easier than regular and can help with building up confidence. Then when that has been mastered, you can give knitting with needles a try. With that in mind, here is our guide on how to teach kids to knit.
French Knitting using a Knitting Nancy
A Knitting Nancy (also called a Ned, Spool, Tower, or a Knobby) is an excellent device for children because it teaches the essentials, but it is much easier than needles for small hands to use because it holds the child’s stitches while their fingers can move the yarn.
MamaMoontime has instructions on how to make your own Knitting Nancy out of a tree branch and how to use it.
Or if you aren’t quite up to a DIY project you can buy a Nancy along the lines of these guys:
You often see a version of knitting Nancys in toy stores in the craft section. It may take a little bit of time for a child to used get to using a Nancy, but they are generally very child friendly.
A Clover Wonder Knitter makes working with yarn easy for kids, and it comes with a 3 and 6 pin removable head. Most kids love that it isn’t complicated and is very easy to use.
If French knitting isn’t something that your child wants to do, maybe give Finger Knitting a try, all you need is some wool and your … (can you guess?) fingers! It’s very easy for small kids and lots of fun once you get the hang of it. The easiest way to learn is to watch someone doing it, so here are some excellent instructional online videos:
Knitting (with Needles)
Okay, here we go, now we are getting down to some serious business. If you are teaching a younger child (ages 7-10), you will want to use smaller needles, try to get a size 7 or 8 that are wooden or bamboo because the yarn can slip off the metal needles. You will also want to start with good quality, thick wool, or acrylic yarn, so it is more comfortable for kids to hold.
One of the best series that we came across for teaching kids is called No-Rules Knitting at the Teen Knit Cafe. It’s a lot of fun and super clear with the instructions. It’s supposed to be for teens, but we think it’s suitable for all ages. You can check out full DVD or some of the online videos that have been posted.
There are also some kits you can check out that are bright and colorful and might help get kids excited about learning. One you may want to consider is the Alex Chunky and Funky Scarf Beginner’s Kit in Box, it has crazy wide needles that look pretty cool. They also offer a few videos that show some basic techniques that are useful and simple for kids to follow, even if you don’t get this kit.
The Best Books and DVDs for Kids
- Kids Knitting: Projects for Kids of all Ages by Melanie Falick is a book that teaches kids of all ages using straightforward language, step-by-step instructions, and bright illustrations. Kids will learn all the basics, including finer knitting, casting on and binding in the round and shaping.
- DVD The Art of Knitting 4 Kids Kit for ages 5+ that has three different options for teaching kids. There is a promo video you can check out that explains it all. This set is very well-reviewed.