Teaching a Beginner’s Crochet Class

By Tameko Barnette – 16 Comments

While I have never been to a formal beginner’s crochet class, I have been around a group of people who sat together and worked on their crochet projects. However, there was one person who instructed the others. She was obviously very skilled at what she did and the others in the group hung on to her every word as she gave them the basics of crochet.

When we see the word “class” we tend to think of the desk and chairs, perhaps a large table or desk the teacher sits behind, and everyone sitting around frightened, hoping they will not be called on to come to the blackboard.

One of the things I will share is that a crochet class does not have to be anything formal. If you wish to teach a class on crochet, do not be discouraged by what you would consider to be a ‘lack of knowledge’. More than likely, you’ve been crocheting for a long time and you do have a great amount of knowledge to share with beginners of this craft. You don’t have to possess a degree in order to share the basics of a craft that is near and dear to your heart.

All you have to do is have passion, a desire to share, and a desire to learn as well. Yes! You can learn something while you teach. Actually, teaching is one of the best ways to master something. Teaching offers you the opportunity to remember all that you have learned and along the way you may think about what you’re sharing in a different light.

Meanwhile, here are a few tips to help you get started on your teaching journey.

Be Organized, But Not Really. You should make sure you have an agenda for each class or meeting. However, do not be obsessive about being organized with the class. A big part of the fun is unexpected conversation, the new discoveries, and brilliant twists and turns the class can take at any given time.

Choose Day and Time, Stick To It. When you choose a day and time for your class or meeting, make every effort to be consistent. You will have ‘regulars’ that show up every week, but you will have new people popping in and popping out on a regular basis as well. Just make sure your day and time is always the same. Consistency is very important.

Keep In Touch. Make sure that you start an e-mail listing and bring an e-mail list on a clipboard to every class to sign the participants up for regular e-mail updates such as a newsletter, if you choose to create one or keep in touch about crochet events and let the class know when you need to cancel a class and when class will resume. Be sure to set boundaries with keeping in touch. Make sure the e-mail listing is for your updates to reach them. While you may find that you have made a new friend or two, if you are already a busy person, you wouldn’t want the entire class messaging you all the time in between classes asking questions that can wait until the next meeting.

So there you have it. A few tips to help you jump start your beginner’s crochet class. In addition, remember to just be yourself. This is a great way to engage the entire class. Inject plenty of humor into the class. While we love our craft, it’s not a good idea to take ourselves too seriously at times. For many people who will show up to your class, this is a stress-reliever after a long day or a long week at work and/or at home. So, the keyword is FUN, FUN, FUN!

If you have taught a beginner’s crochet class, share your experience with us. If you have attended a beginner’s crochet class, let us know how the experience was for you as well. We look forward to hearing from you!

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16 Comments

  1. Catee says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this. I am preparing to start a beginners crochet class. I have been putting it off because I didn’t know if I had the skills or confidence to teach others…this has given me the insight I need to go forward.

  2. I recently started teaching a couple of crochet classes – with two very different groups of ladies. The first tip about being organised, but flexible within that is probably the most important, as well as taking bucket loads of patience. I have found that what I thought would make up a six-lesson course has taken some of my ladies 3 sessions and others look like they will need 10.

    Everyone has their own way that works for them, everyone seems to have a lesson where nothing makes sense no matter what I, or any of their classmates try. Everyone also has a CLICK moment where suddenly things fall into place, make sense and their fingers magically know what they are doing.

    It’s a wonderful feeling, when that moment happens.

  3. Barbara L says:

    I have been trying to find a crochet group near me in the Reading Berkshire area, there just does not seem to be anything!!!!

  4. Brenda M says:

    I’ve taught a variety of crochet classes to all age groups over the years, along with other types of arts/crafts/jewelry, and feel strongly that “each one should teach one” (or a few more!). If you love your skill, you should spread the knowlege of it to others to keep it alive and fresh.

    The most important thing—–no matter WHO the audience consists of——is to keep your sense of humor about the whole process. It relaxes folks, and establishes the best atmosphere for learning. Be prepared, be organized, but be willing to laugh at YOURSELF!!! One of the best icebreakers I’ve ever incorporated is to show the newbies my own “mistakes”, and then talk about how I fixed them. Talk about your own learning “stumbles”, and offer up flexible solutions to getting past these spots.

    It’s much more important to instill the desire to learn more by enjoying the work, than to be so uptight about perfection in the beginning stages. Just like riding a bicycle, your skills get smoother and more efficient as you practice them—–not when you start and stop because it’s not “right”.

  5. sue says:

    Great post. I just taught a private lesson yesterday, one that still has me pondering what I could have done differently. I was exhausted when we were done……..but, I do think the woman was generally happy & “got” the technique she was after.

    One tip I always forget! I often teach in my home & it brings with it one huge drawback. Students just don’t go home when a typical class is over. If I teach somewhere else, I start packing up my supplies & samples about 5 minutes before class is over………….taking questions at the same time. I haven’t come up with a polite way to end classes here at my house.

    • Fiona Audain says:

      Sue, I used to teach in my own home for a group of ladies. My strategy for getting them to leave was to state at the outset that the class would run from 1-30pm through to 3pm when we would then have a cup of tea/coffee & afternoon tea. Followed by 1/2 an hour for questions, show and tell. All the ladies appreciated the time given to them and would happily chat while the dishes were done and everything packed up. They all let me know if they were not going to be able to be there for the next lesson & were all eager to turn up for the next!

      Hope that this helps! Failing that, you could go and get a bowl and potatoes, carrots etc and start peeling them for tea, saying goodness I didn’t realize how late it had got!!

      Have fun and encourage the students to help each other are my other big tips!

  6. Alma says:

    I’ve been teaching classes for many years now = My first time was at Shriner’s Children Hospital in Shreveport, La; what a surprise and challenge; I had 8 ladies (moms of patients there), only 1 spoke a little English and the rest only knew Spanish – I went on the Internet to get my instructions translated into Spanish, then I could use the English and they go to the same in Spanish – Don’t like to brag but the ladies did great and left doing some beautiful work – I also was awarded “Volunteer of the Year” for teaching this class. I taught during the summer for low income children and loved it and made so many little friends = I’m now teaching at a Maternity Home near me and they are so excited.

    I’m left handed and use the “Mirror Image”; where I stand in front of them and they use their right hands to do what I’m doing with my left. I hear so many talk about left handed and there is nothing to it, you just reverse some of your patterns like when making clothes (anything like Afghans, Scarves and etc you just do as the pattern says). I’ve even taught successfully other left handed people.

  7. Mary Lou says:

    Would anyone be willing to share how much you generally charge per person? Any difference between a child and an adult?

    All of your tips are great and I am seriously considering trying to teach within my neighborhood.

    Thanks!

  8. Fiona Audain says:

    I used to teach Crochet in my own home. Nothing weird about that, some of the ladies were my friends others became friends. Before any crochet was done we would have our loosening up exercises, this was always greeted with lots of laughter and certainly got rid of the work weeks tension. We laughed at ourselves as much as each other, standing shaking hands around, arms, legs and rolling heads and shoulders. Everyone sat where ever they were the most comfortable, be that on a chair or most of us sat on the floor. A run through of our crochet week, then on to the lesson. I always tried to make it fun for everyone & encouraged them to watch, learn & help each other. One of my ladies became confident enough to start teaching a few of the girls at a school close to where she lived. I would let them browse through my numerous crochet books & choose what they would like to learn to do. Afternoon tea, questions & show and tell wound up the afternoons lessons with ladies eager to do some more crochet and invite friends to join our monthly get together. They had my phone number & I encouraged them to phone me if they wee stuck with a stitch or instruction. Didn’t get many calls, did have a lot of fun and learned along with my class.

  9. I created post cards offering two-hour crochet lessons at beginner and intermediate levels for individuals and small groups. I charge $25.00 for a two-hour lesson. At my first craft fair, I gave them out as people came into my vending booth. Lately, I have been second-guessing my rate, however I was comfortable with it when I had the cards printed! I received several comments that crochet lessons are hard to come by. I am hoping that I can generate interest and revenue.
    Thanks for all of the wonderful tips. It’s definitely important to keep things fun and to have a lesson plan or goal. I think a field trip to a local craft shop for supplies and yarn would be a fun thing to do.

  10. CAROL says:

    such wonderful suggestions! i have recently picked up crocheting again ( i retired from my job) and now people ask me how hard it is to learn… ( i take it with me when i know i’ll be standing in line for the bank or doctor’s appointment)..i am strongly tempted to offer a class…i’ll let you know how it turns out…thanks again for great ideas and suggestions.

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