one of the early handwork activities that is taught in many waldorf environments is finger knitting. a very simple, single chain of knitting that is done with only the hands. children are encouraged to learn this when they are of kindergarten age, as it is believed there is a close relationship between finger movement, speech and thinking. in fact, i read a quote of steiner's recently that said 'thinking is cosmic knitting - a person who is unskillful in his fingers will also be unskillful in his intellect, having less mobile ideas and thoughts.'
so, we have begun finger knitting in earnest. and maya is very passionate about it, as is her nature. we started with a rather bulky yarn (in rainbow colors, of course) so she could clearly see and experience the movement of the yarn, and she knitted several yards the very first day. we have decided it will be a garland for our christmas tree this year.
she then wanted to move on to a smaller gauge yarn, and she is doing just as well with it. what a joy it is to teach her like this, just as i did my older children when they were young. and to see her learn so quickly and enthusiastically!
yours in the wonder of both teaching and learning to knit,
after my last post, i had several requests to post the other 4 rotating pictures that we have from this set. so here they are. these have been a favorite of all of my little ones. i actually purchased these years ago from our waldorf school. but they can also be found, along with the frames, at waldorf-toys.com out of germany the netherlands. enjoy!
i've started two new flickr groups to showcase and celebrate the beauty of two well known waldorf wooden toy makers - heartwood arts (the work of bill bluhm) and buntspechte (woodpecker toys from germany). if you are on flickr and have photos of toys and figures from either of these two amazing toy makers, please come and join my new heartwood arts flickr group or buntspechte flickr group and share the beauty!