Ahhh, these little wonders! We love them, cherish them, their big eyes dazzle us, their laughter melts our hearts…
When do we crochet now? ^^
I still remember that sweet naivety that made me think I would crochet while he played – all alone – took a nap – for 3 hours – slept – until 8 in the morning… Ah, HA, HA.
I quickly understood.
Strategies were needed (I suddenly doubled my time in the bathroom; I never put away a project started to pick it up the next day, just in case I had time to make 2 stitches in passing by; I took my crochet EVERYWHERE with me in case my son found something or someone interesting enough for him not to ask me for 5 minutes straight…)
And, I must admit right away that I lied a bit because who am I going to fool into thinking that for the past 2 years, I haven’t left the bathroom door open to avoid cries and desperate abandonment screams on the other side :D
But little by little, we really learn. We observe, we hear advice, we read books…
“The key is to involve the child.”
Without further ado, I handed him a ball of yarn and a crochet hook… And in three minutes flat, he made a mess like none of my cats had ever managed to with the same accessories before.
It was fun for 2 minutes, but it’s not really a PERMANENT solution :D
In reality, “involving” the child is giving them a USEFUL task. So that they feel important. Because they love to help. To spend quality time with us.
So, instead of handing him his crayons and a random coloring book saying, “here, you can draw, it’s fun,” I handed him a sketch of what I was crocheting and said, “would you like to help Mom find other pretty colors for the mushroom bear?”
I’m not going to lie to you a second time; he’s a little over 2 years old, his ability to concentrate on the same activity is never very, very long… But just that little rephrasing changed EVERYTHING! I can’t even imagine with older kids! Asking them to make several proposals, choosing together, and then really crocheting in the colors they like?
And why not take out the playdough, ask them if they could reproduce the model? And when it’s done, send them into the garden or to their toys to find little treasures to integrate into the photos of our finished creations?
Once you start, the possibilities are almost endless! The key is to involve them FOR REAL. Plus, they will be even happier to receive (or give) the finished creation because they participated. WIN WIN!
This little episode inspired me to add coloring pages to my patterns. One for us, to choose our colors (plus, not everyone has children ^^) and another one to give to your little ones.
[You’ll find Shroombear pattern on Etsy or Ravelry (and you can read this article to help you choose between both platforms ^^) ]
PS: I’m super curious to know if you have other tips for crocheting with very little ones! We can never have enough :P