I wish I could've been to one of these knit events. The children have been knitting hundreds of hats, sharing their skills with their families and listening to stories about community from teaching artists affiliated with Springboard. What fun!
With the support of the Kresge Foundation, The Red Thread Project® is back in St. Louis working with students in three public schools. I was there in February to kick off the project and teach knitting (with the assistance of some amazing volunteers!). I'll be back in May to sew hats to the "red thread" and lead the performance with musician Moacyr Marchini of Sambabom.
As I continue the project, I am consistently amazed and touched by how much it means to others. This came to me recently by email:
Today’s students are in serious danger. They are becoming increasing isolated from others through communication such as Facebook and My Space, rather than developing real and meaningful friendships. Our children are also the victims of a “me” society. Children are more concerned about getting a new iPod or new sneakers than about what they might do to help someone else. Service learning would certainly be helpful for our students but enough of this just doesn’t happen. And then along comes The Red Thread Project. Through the story of the red thread, students are introduced to a sense of community. They have an opportunity to give back, even though many come from situations where giving back is difficult. They are working together in the classroom, helping each other as they make the hats. They are thinking together as they discuss who might really benefit from the hats they make. They are planning together as they talk about how they will present their final products. They are communicating as they talk about the project. The Red Thread Project is a blessing to our students at Mann School. It provides our children with a much needed opportunity to work together and communicate, but most importantly, an opportunity to give back.
by Lauren Patten, Counselor