I am finding that my best homeschool lessons are last minute activities prompted by interest or questions. Taking my cues from what M wants to learn or is interested in, is part of what makes homeschooling so awesome.
The other day I was fixing a pair of pants. As I sat at my machine, measuring, marking, cutting, etc., M came up and started watching me asking "What are you doing?" "Why are you cutting that mommy?" My first reaction was to tell her I was busy and she should go play. She remained quiet and stayed watching me attentively. I stopped and noticed her curious eyes. After mentally slapping myself on the wrist for ignoring such an obvious teaching opportunity, I smiled and asked her if she would like to learn how to sew. Her smile was so big while she nodded profusely.
I grabbed some extra fabric and decided to walk her through the steps of sewing a Simple Drawstring Bag. I really don't know too much about sewing, just the basics, but I know enough to teach some beginner projects. I knew she would be most impressed with something simple and quick. The drawstring bag was perfect. I talked her through all the steps and asked her to help me with as much as possible. Note: Don't be afraid to let kids handle scissors or needles. Monitor closely. And let them experience things for themselves. Being very involved will help them advance quickly and they will remember the activities with great appreciation.
I sat her in my lap and showed her how to position her hands on the fabric to guide it through the machine. She was so quiet and careful. Her little hands were so carefully placed that it was the most precious view ever! (My instant thought: Quick! Grab the camera!)
M couldn't reach the peddle of course, so I told her to tell me when I should start. She said "Go!" and I pressed the peddle and guided the fabric through her hands and fingers.
She loved the experience so much and was incredibly proud of the final product. Showing her bag to daddy was a special moment.
At this rate, she will know more about sewing than I do by the time she is a teen. I'm sure she will be teaching me soon enough. :D