Pre-sewing activities with a 2,5-years-old toddler

As a sewing mom I look for opportunities to include B. in any sewing-related activities. Some of them I introduced in an art activities post.

Usually when I work at my table, B. joins me and asks to play with a button box or my sewing box. Although I definitely progress slower with my work when he is next to me, I see many advantages of his presence at my table. Firstly, he sees that I have my own interests. Secondly, we spend time together, sometimes talking about what we are doing. Thirdly, he is allowed to play with objects that I would not let him to play by himself – choking and injury hazard – which is beneficial because he practices new skills, e. g. with pins and pin cushion, fabric scissors, measuring tape. And also he experiences us doing different things side by side.

I wanted him to be more independent with some materials so I prepared some sewing-related shelf activities last week.

Shelf activities

Threading apple activity has been on B.’s shelf for several times; however last week was the only week it could stay on the shelf. The reason is that for the first time in B.’s history it did not turn into a wrecking ball. While threading he even did yum-yum sounds for the eating worm.

Stringing large beads. The most challenging part for B. was to realize how to work with fingers to get the needle through a bead.

Stringing medium beads. These are the beads we received in a prescription Mud and bloom box to decorate twigs. We reuse them and B. can create his own bead necklace.

Working on the skill mentioned above.

Pulling threads off the edge of the embroidery fabric. B. has not chosen this activity last week. We will try next time.

Bead stringing and pulling threads are activities included in Sewing in the Montessori Classroom by Aimee Fagan. She identifies them as “early sewing lessons”, I call them pre-sewing activities.

Dressing frame – large buttons. I made this frame about a year ago when B. was interested in buttoning up, unbuttoning and counting buttons on his cardigans. Since then B. was not into practicing by himself, we did it together few times.

Dressing frame – zipper. This was the very first frame I made. M. prepared the frame itself and I sewed the fabric part of it and assembled it together. I added also a fabric rectangle at the end of the zipper to prevent separating two zipper sides. I can easily remove it later when the time comes…

Clothes for animals puzzle. This activity was probably B.’s favorite last week. He starts to get into puzzle work in general. The activity is just slightly related to sewing, but when I find any possible relation with the week theme, I definitely put it out.

Book

This beautiful book Ella’s Night Lights by Lucy Fleming is about friendship, empathy and helping others. Stunning gentle illustrations accompany the story. Ella is a moth who would love to see a sunrise. Her animal friends, to whom she helped before, created a special shelter for Ella to safely watch the sunrise.

So, sewing mentioned in the book, it must be on the shelf for pre-sewing activities week!

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