You guys all know that I have a thing for music, right?...and you've seen me rhyme. You also know that I was never very athletic, and I am definitely NOT "poetry in motion"...I've proven that over and over again in this lifetime! That might leave you wondering what the heck I ever did to pass the time on the playground when I was a kid, and it might not surprise you to know that I delighted in the rhyming games...jump rope rhymes, hand clapping games and the like were more my speed!
Don't be fooled...I was no better at jumping rope than I was at kick ball or soccer (or running)...but I was really good at memorizing the rhymes, and turning the rope so others could jump! You remember the classics, I'm sure...like:
Cinderella, dressed in yella,
Went upstairs to kiss a fella.
Made a mistake, and kissed a snake!
How many doctors did it take?
1, 2, 3,...
Or perhaps you did this one:
Teddy bear, teddy bear, turn around!
Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch the ground!
Teddy bear, teddy bear, shine your shoe!
Teddy bear, teddy bear, how old are you?
1, 2, 3,...
Oh! And I loved the hand clapping games, especially with a little melody, like:
Miss Susie had a tugboat, the tugboat had a bell.
Miss Susie went to Heaven, the tugboat went to...
Hello, operator? Please give me number 9,
(I'll stop here, you've probably heard this one)
So, you get the picture...I like rhyming! And singing! And knitting! Sooo, it really shouldn't surprise anyone that I like knitting rhymes and songs. Rhymes help you remember things. The ABC Song rhymes (and so do most of the songs we use to teach our toddlers and pre-schoolers). Most songs rhyme, and just take a moment to look around in your head and see how many stray lyrics are still hanging out up there, even songs from decades ago! I can even remember jump-rope rhymes from elementary school, for goodness' sake!
It's no surprise, then, that when I teach knitting (especially to kids) I love to use rhymes! I use them for adults, too...but the look on a pre-teen who is first learning to knit when I say, "In through the front door, grab your scarf! Out through the back, before the cat barfs!," that look is priceless! (Wait, did she just say BARF?!?) I get much the same look from adults who don't know me well! Of course, the ones who know me barely bat an eye. lol!
I know I'm not the only one using rhythm and meter to teach knitting, so I looked up knitting rhymes this week, in the hopes of sharing with you. After all, you never know when you'll need to teach someone new to knit! Here's the most common knitting rhyme I found (there are variations, very few include the word "barf."):
In through the front door and around the back.
Out through the window, off jumps Jack!
Or, if you want to teach the purl stitch, try this one:
Under the fence, catch the sheep.
Back we come, off we leap!