Left to right - Rico Lescot, Mrs Gwynne Hodges and Jordan Ellis
Left to right - Rico Lescot, Mrs Gwynne Hodges and Jordan Ellis Veda Dante

Children rediscover lost homecrafts thanks to the CWA

CLICK go the needles, boys, click, click, click - that's the sound and the song from the Year 6 classroom at Brunswick Heads Public School these mornings.

The kids there are rediscovering the lost art of homecraft, thanks to the local branch of the Country Women's Association.

Each morning, separate groups of 11 and 12-year-old boys and girls spend nearly an hour learning how to cast off and catch-stitch.

"We've been running the program for three years and it's proving to be a real success," said CWA secretary Robin Baker, who came up with the idea with Joyce Rankin and Gwynne Hodges.

"There aren't many mothers who knit any more, mainly because the women are working.

"But the grannies and aunts do," Robin said.

Despite taking years to learn how to knit "with tears pouring down my face", Robin said the children were picking up the skills "in about eight minutes".

"I remember having to knit navy and khaki wool socks and scarves for the soldiers and I had no idea what I was doing," she said. "These kids are quick learners and, interestingly, the boys this year have a lot more finesse than the girls."

Cooking is next on the agenda, with the CWA ladies keen to get involved in the Kitchen Garden Foundation school's program, a sustainable food production and preparation initiative of celebrity chef Stephanie Alexander.

"It's handy to have these skills regardless whether you're a mechanic or the prime minister," Robin said.



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