Quilting with Children

Lap robe project

The Story Behind the Quilts

Lap robe project

As a community service project, sixty fourth graders completed eighteen lap robes for a local nursing home. This was an attempt to get all the students involved at a personal level and turned out to be rather overwhelming. If I were to do such a project again, I would have the students working in larger groups to create less quilts.

How They Were Created

Parents were asked to donate cotton fabric scraps, which were cut into six inch squares. Each group of three students picked squares and designed a lap robe that was six squares by eight squares (approximately 36" by 48"). Although careful instructions were given, it was hard for students to stack the rows so that their design remained intact throughout the sewing process. Most quilts became much more scrappy than we intended. Students sewed the squares into pairs, the pairs into rows, then sewed the rows together. The quilts were taken home by me to quick turn and returned to school for the students to tie.

This project took a lot more class time than I intended but the response by the residents at the nursing home was overwhelming. The residents loved the quilts and shared many stories with the kids about their own experiences with quilts. The workers told us afterwards that the quilts had to be marked with the resident's name so that they wouldn't get lost in the wash!

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