by Jennifer Dixon, April 28, 2019
Home economics class used to be a core part of the public school curriculum, but today the focus seems to be more on academics and less on life skills. Whether it’s the ability to simply boil an egg, sew a button or knot a tie properly, young adults are struggling with these simple tasks that help them to function independently.
“Society couldn’t get over the stereotype of the home economics teacher,” says Gayla Randal, educational and program consultant for the Kansas State Department of Education to NPR. “Anything that wasn’t about a test score was scrutinized.” Homeschooling, however, has the ability to customize a child’s curriculum to include courses that interest them. A sewing course is a perfect introduction to get kids back on track. It’s fun and beneficial, and their creativity might even lead to the latest fashions.
Not only can sewing be a creative outlet, but there are a number of physical and mental benefits associated with this activity. Sewing requires hand-eye coordination, problem-solving skills, and concentration and focus. All of these skills are essential for children to develop. Sewing also allows time for children to be mindful. With technology at their fingertips almost every second of the day, the ability to focus on just one thing becomes almost impossible. From open tabs to chat windows, sensory overload is all too common. Mindfulness has been shown to boost the immune system and acts as a tool to process emotions in a healthy way, according to an article from Psychology Today.
Probably the best part for kids is how much fun sewing can be. Young children should be given small projects that can be produced in one sitting, such as pillows. While some children are using crayons to draw images and designs on fabrics, others can work on hand sewing and stuffing. Another idea is to get the children to create a costume box. Kids love to play dress-up on any given day, but making costumes and accessories for trick-or-treating is an especially exciting time for this project.
Being able to lead a sewing course is probably going to be difficult if you don’t know how to sew. But that’s okay—you can learn as you go. More important than knowing how to sew is knowing where and how to find resources.
YouTube has infinite tutorials, and there are numerous blogs specific for children learning to sew. What you will need, however, are the supplies. The items below are some essentials to implement your first sewing course: