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Teaching High School kids in a behavior classroom

I am considering teaching knitting to a group of teens who are in a behavior classroom. These kids are in this classroom because of behavioral or emotional issues and were not successful in a general education program. They are bright kids, but maybe a little tough to sell on the idea of knitting. My thinking is by helping others and finding a place to donate their knitting they can really help themselves. I have taught knitting to very young (very eager) students, but never high school age kids. I am a little unsure about how to get started. Does anyone have experience with a similar situation? Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks so much.


The key to selling the kids on something is to get their natural leader, the peer that everyone tries to emulate or befriend, interested in what you are trying to teach. Try getting this person's input on what you should do. For instance, they might prefer a project for themselves or a holiday gift to give a friend rather than charity work. This person could help you pick a pattern and yarn colors, too. Also, I've heard of classes that start with making knitting needles out of dowels. I don't know if that will help garner interest, but it will help reduce costs. Also consider selling hats, scarves, and socks to help defray cost or maybe as a fund raiser for the class. There is nothing like a pizza party or field trip to help motivate students.

Please be careful for your own safety - you are, after all, giving troubled kids sharp, pointy sticks.

You can do great things for these kids. Keep up the good work!