Our first week after winter break was a mitten-filled week. Our literature for the week was Jan Brett's The Mitten. Our classroom was all mittened out from tiny mittens to match in the rice bin, to a mitten hunt, and a mitten tree. I thought it would be nifty for the kiddos to stretch their sewing skills by stitching up their own pair of mittens that we could revisit for our week of The Three Little Kittens.
The first thing we did to make out mittens was to gather up paper, pencils, pins, and scissors. We needed to draft a pattern. Each child placed their hand on a piece of paper to be traced around in a mitten shape the size of their hand. I cut out their shape (otherwise this could take awhile) and had the children pick a front and back piece of wool from our wool basket (scraps of felted sweaters).
The children had the opportunity to pin their pattern onto their wool that I then cut for them. Wool is tricky and thick. We did this part twice, once for each mitten.
The paper was then removed, wool repinned, and needles were threaded. We talked about always poking the needle up (or down as long as it was in the same direction). The children sat quietly and really focused on this part, carefully stitching away. Some of them had trouble beginning so I would hold the mitten for them as they stitched but they soon got the hang of it and whipped through hteir mittens in no time!
We then removed our pins and put them back into the pin disc. Some of
the children really liked this part and made sure each slot always had a
pin in it so we wouldn't get stuck.
They were so proud! The next class day, the children returned with their mittens and their parents told stories of how the children wore their mittens all day and some even slept with them. I'm thinking we will make a pillow next and then maybe a stuffed lovey or two. I'm so excited!