DIY sewing frame for preschoolers

by Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. on February 25, 2012

in DIY, Learning to Sew, motor skills, Sewing Frame

We have been talking about quilts in our class and part of our continuing discussion was on how the quilted pieces of fabric were sewn together.  One of the quilt books I shared with the children was a book titled “You’re Wonderful” by Debbie Clement. This book is a sing-along-book that comes with a CD of the song in the back of the book.  Each page of the book is a picture of a real quilt and we talked about what story we thought each quilted square might be telling us. We listen to the song and sang along with it while we worked and played all week long…

To expand on the sewing aspect of quilts, I wanted to share a sewing activity with the children so I created two sewing frames based on this wonderful idea I found for creating a tapestry table over at Kleas. It was a perfect way to give the children a little “real” sewing practice…

To create my sewing frames, I used two wooden picture frames (without the glass) and stapled some strips of burlap to the frames for our sewing canvas…

When the children first started sewing, they would stick the needle into the burlap and then stretch the yarn across the board to make a second stitch leaving no yarn left for a third stitch…

So to help make the process a little more productive, I sat at the table with the children and modeled how to push the Plastic Sewing Needles up and down through the burlap material and gradually work their way across the material like an inchworm would do…

I also took the time to show the children how they needed to pull the yarn all the way through the burlap before they started their next stitch. The children did a great job at working through each of the different steps they needed to remember…

Push the needle in and right back up then pull the yarn all the way until it stops.

Now move your needle over just a little bit and do it again!

Some of the children stayed with the sewing for a long time and even worked on threading their own needles. Other children sewed until their original piece of yarn ran out and then moved on to do something else…

Other than giving the children a few instructions on the sewing process, I didn’t worry about which way they chose to sew on the sewing frame…

The children started to really get the hang of it – it just takes a little practice. We had some great fine motor skill development going on in the process…

After the children finished sewing for the day, I hung the two sewing frames up on the wall. I might keep letting the children practice sewing on these same two sewing frames for awhile or I might replace the burlap and let them start with a blank sewing frame again. I haven’t decided yet…

I do love having the sewing frames up on our wall!

You can purchase plastic sewing needles from Amazon…

This article is being shared with you by Deborah Stewart of Teach Preschool - Sharing the wonders of early learning in action!

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