Never underestimate the curiosity of a child. I was reminded of this while doing a weaving demonstration at the Red River Parish Fair yesterday. My booth was set up to show people how to weave, and that there are a number of things you can use for looms. I went from a small 4” pin loom to a triangle loom to a child’s potholder loom, and even demonstrated that you can use a hula hoop for a loom.
Meet my new weaving buddy, Nehemiah. He took one look at the 4-harness loom, and his curiosity went wild. I stood for a few moments, and watched as he checked out the loom . He walked slowly around it, studying it intensely, and stopping every now and then to get a closer look. It seemed as if he was trying to figure out what it was and how it worked. I couldn’t stand it any longer. With a smile on my face, I walked over and sat him down in the chair. Using my feet, I manipulated the treadles, lifting the shed, and threw the shuttle. I explained what it was and showed him how it worked. To my amazement, he took to it in a matter of seconds, and wove a good inch or two with very little problem.
The Curiosity of Children
Nehemiah served to prove something I have always believed – children are curious by nature. They want to learn, and if it is something new and different, all the better. We as adults need to nurture that desire and take the time to teach them. I am not sure how you learned some of the skills you know today, but I am willing to bet at least a few of them were taught to you by an older relative, neighbor, or friend. You don’t have to be a child to have a mentor. I am sure by Nehemiah’s standards, I am an old lady (even if I don’t think of myself that way).
I often ask some of my friends to learn a new skill. Next week, my friend Lorea’s mother will teach me the basics of crochet, and at the next Farm Women’s Exchange, Kathleen will be teaching crochet hats. This gives me the opportunity to stretch my wings, and learn a deeper level of the craft. I strive to do my best to honor the tradition and teach other people the skills that I have.
Do yourself a favor and be a mentor to someone. Allow someone else to pay that favor forward and become a mentor. It will amaze you how broad your horizons will become. And wouldn’t it be wonderful to learn something new?
Thank you, Nehemiah, for allowing me to teach you something new and reminding me to be willing to teach the curious. You can come weave with me anytime you want. If you decide to learn how to weave on that hula hoop, just let me know.