Teach kids to sew using burlap and yarn for an easy beginning sewing lesson.
Beginner sewing projects for toddlers, preschoolers, and kindergarteners can help them learn how to use their hands to do valuable things and develop independence at home. Another benefit of learning to sew is that it can help children develop the fine motor muscles in their hands necessary for writing. As the saying goes, “Nimble fingers make nimble minds.” You might also enjoy teaching kids to sew a basic running stitch in a line by hand.
Teaching Kids How to Sew with Burlap and Yarn
Learning how to sew on burlap is an excellent sewing lesson for beginners. One of my favorite activities as a child was sewing burlap with yarn, and I loved practicing embroidery stitches and making detailed pictures that I cherished for years.
Recently my 3-year-old daughter demonstrated that she could string beads directly onto the monofilament line. I knew she had developed the fine motor muscles in her hands enough to try this beginning sewing activity for toddlers and preschoolers.
Another good indicator of readiness for this sewing activity would be when children begin using lacing cards or are starting to learn how to write.
Because this is a sewing activity for beginners, and my daughter was only a toddler, I decided to start with a straightforward step or action. First, I invited her to push the blunt-edged needle through a hole in the burlap and pull it through to the other side.
Next, I asked her to place the needle back into the same fabric side that it came out of. Then I encouraged her to repeat the simple sewing activity until she filled up the burlap fabric scrap with yarn.
I wanted to give her something easy for her first attempt at sewing so she wouldn’t get discouraged. And she enjoyed it so much that I decided to share this easy sewing activity for toddlers and preschoolers with you. Scroll down for the complete step-by-step instructions if you would like to invite kids to sew with burlap and yarn at home or in the classroom.
You can also try leaf lacing, another easy beginning sewing project for kids. Using sturdy leaves to practice sewing instead of lacing cards makes this homeschool activity idea economical and eco-friendly.
Related: How to Sew a Button Apple Tree
Sewing Materials Needed for This Fine-Motor Activity
- Cotton yarn or embroidery thread
- Darning needle or plastic needle
- Embroidery Hoop (You might be able to find these second-hand. We inherited ours from grandma.)
- Embroidery scissors
- Needle threader (optional)
Related: How to Sew a Pocket Pet Mouse
How to Set Up Burlap and Yarn Sewing Activity for Kids
Use the step-by-step directions below to set up this beginning sewing activity for kids before inviting toddlers, preschoolers, or kindergarteners to give it a try.
- Cut out a square of burlap slightly larger than the embroidery hoop. Make sure you leave at least 2 inches on all four sides.
- Place the burlap square into the embroidery hoop.
- Cut a section of yarn or embroidery thread about twice as long as your child’s arm. Too long will be difficult for them to pull through, and too short will not be enough to sew more than a stitch or two.
- Show your child how to thread the needle by placing the yarn through the big eye. It helps to moisten the string first. You can show them how to use a needle threader if you prefer.
- Tie a double or triple square knot at the end of the length of yarn to make sure it doesn’t pull through the burlap. Usually, the end closest to the eye of the needle is pulled through and let loose. You can tie a small knot that will easily pull through the burlap if you think it will make it easier for your child(ren). You can cut it off the needle when finished.
Related: Tons of Fun Arts & Crafts for Kids
Show Children How to Sew
Because young children learn best by watching and imitating others, it is best if you show toddlers and preschoolers how to sew before you hand the needle and thread over to your kids.
Show them how to set up the activity and how to sew a few stitches before inviting them to give it a try. Use slow, deliberate movements with minimal verbal instructions. (See below)
Invite Kids to Sew with Yarn and Burlap
Encourage toddlers and preschoolers to try sewing with the simple steps below.
- Insert the needle through the back of the burlap in the embroidery hoop.
- Pull through until the knot catches.
- Insert the needle back into the same side.
- Turn over the embroidery hoop and pull the yarn all the way through until it catches. Don’t pull too hard, or the thread will slip out of the needle. (Unless you have tied a small knot to prevent this.)
- Insert the needle into the back of the burlap and pull it through to the front.
- Next, encourage children to continue sewing it however they like. (They will begin to learn what works best through practice.)
- Invite children to continue sewing until they run out of yarn length.
- Finally, tie it off in the back or tie it to another yarn section and continue to sew.
Teach kids to sew using burlap and yarn for an easy first lesson in the mechanics of sewing. Allow your child to practice sewing on burlap utilizing this technique a few times before trying to complete more advanced hand sewing projects such as learning how to sew a basic running stitch, sewing hearts, or even a pocket pet mouse!
More Beginner Sewing Projects for Kids
- Teach Kids to Sew a Basic Running Stitch
- How to Sew a Pocket Pet Mouse
- Lovebirds Sewing Project with Pattern
- Narwhale Sewing Project with Pattern