What children can teach us

Today, Scott and I drove out to Huddleston House to pick up our canopies, the little loom and my grill (it was too hot to bring home on Tuesday, and the rest was left for their use the rest of the week).

I asked Karen how it went and she had nothing but positive, glowing terms for the whole week of camp for the kids.  They were introduced to llamas, thanks to Mike Hoopengardner, they learned how to knit, spin on drop spindles and make bread on the hearth.

One young lady took to the knitting so well, that she was thrilled to death to learn that she could take her knitting needles and yarn home with her.  In fact, she went home and taught her little sister how to knit.  I told Karen to feel free to send some extra balls of yarn home with the kids if they wanted it.  Anything to encourage them to continue knitting.

The same young lady couldn’t wait to get her spinning off of the spindle so she could weave it into the cloth on the loom.  Karen said the girl would like that part of it to keep, so I’ll be cutting it off and mailing it to her.  Also, I’m going to invite her, her sisters and their mom to join us on BASK night.

One thing I have come to love about working with kids (and, mind you, this is my first attempt) is their lack of inhibitors.  You show them how to work a loom, hand them a stick shuttle with yarn on it, point out other yarns they can play with and turn them loose.  We adults want patterns so we can “make something.”  Well, kids do not need patterns to make something.  They just create.


And what they created was 4 feet of something that is fun, remarkable and very interesting.  You can see where they followed what I had showed them about twills, tabby and basket weave, and you can see where they left the well-trodden track and made their own paths.


Would we have woven something like this and considered it a success?  Most likely not, but this, my friends, is truly a successful thing.  I’m thinking that we adults care too much for perfection in the eyes of the world, and I know I am going to take away a lesson taught to me by these wonderful children.  Play, experiment, be freer in my creativity, and I might create something beautiful.

By the way, the young lady who wants the part with her handspun in it?  Hers is the lime green portion.

One Response

  1. Karen Trent Says:

    Hi. I’m Karen, from Huddleston Farmhouse Museum. We are so thankful to Benita for all the hard work she put in for our “dye day” at Fiber Arts Day Camp. She’s right . . . it was a wonderful experience, and I think I learned as much from the kids as they did from us. Great job everybody!

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