Category Archives: teaching

Knitting Rhymes and Mnemonics

childknittingIn a recent discussion on a Facebook knitting group I’m in, someone who is teaching knitting to a child asked what rhymes or mnemonics she can use to help the child remember the technique, noting that her mother taught her a rhyme but she’s since forgotten it. The answers were so awesome I just had to share. Here they are…


For the Knit Stitch:

  • Up, Round, Under, and Off
    • Or: In, Round, Through, and Out
    • Or: In, Around, Out, Off
    • Or: Up to make x round the top of T and pull off
  • Bottom up, left to right and around, slide the needle down, scoop, pull and off! (This one came with a comment about teaching this to kids of unspecified age at church: “It’s funny, alot [sic] of them think of knitting as ‘off’ and casting on as ‘over’. [T]eaching the right words is almost more trouble than it’s worth at this age.”)
  • In thru the front door / Go round back / Out thru the window / Jump off, Jack
    • Or: In through the front door / Run around the back / Out through the window / Off jumps Jack
  • Run in the front door, grab your scarf, run back out again before the cat throws up
    • Or: In through the door, wrap up, out the door, down the sidewalk
    • Or: In through the front door / Grab your scarf / Back out the front door / Before you barf
  • Stab him, strangle him, pull his guts out and throw him off the cliff. (This one came with a disclaimer: “I learnt a pretty gruesome one from Ravelry that I used to teach children at school to knit, they loved it!” I suppose sometimes it’s the really horrid/odd/gruesome things kids remember, like how they can’t remember the family patriarch/matriarch’s name—my daughter calls both of my husband’s parents “Grandpa”—no matter how many times you tell it to them, but the one time you cuss, they remember that word forever.)


For the Purl Stitch:

  • Dive down for pearls
  • Jack goes in / Puts on his scarf / Comes back out / And takes it off
  • Under the fence / Catch the sheep / Back we come / Off we leap!
  • Down the little bunny hole / Around the big tree / Up pops bunny / And away runs he
    • Or: In through the bunny hole / And round the big tree / And out through the bunny hole / And off goes she
  • In through the back way / Then rope the hog / Back out the gate / And jump off the log!


For the Standard Bind Off:

  • you have Pete and Repeat sitting on a log and Pete jumps over Repeat who’s left


Others recommended Kids Knitting by Melanie Fallick and Auntie Suzanne Blogs it All ( as additional sources for rhymes.