Toe-Up Sock Knitting Syllabus

Note to anyone not in ITD 7072: This syllabus is part of a project for a class in instructional design and technology and is a work in progress. I will be turning this into a tutorial through a series of blog posts on knitting socks from the toe up. If you would like to be notified when the finished tutorials are done, you can follow me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter.


Knitting Socks from the Toe Up
Wendi Watts – Instructor

About the course: This course provides tutorials on knitting socks from the toe up. The course information is completely online and can be done individually or in a group. The course will be divided into a series of blog posts with instruction arranged so students can identify for themselves which (1) material is new to them, (2) they need a refresher on, and (3) they already know and can skip. Before taking this course, knitters should have mastered the knit and purl stitches. This course includes multiple techniques for knitting in the round, casting on and binding off, selecting appropriate yarn, and information on adjusting the pattern to fit. Information on where you can find more information on all the instruction will be included with each post.

The course will include the following instructional strategies, many of which are optional for the students: video and print demonstrations of techniques, self or group assessment, participation online or in a face-to-face group or individual work, and information on reference materials for further study if you are interested. This course is more along the lines of informal learning and is structured in a way that allows the student a high level of flexibility in choice of what they want to learn, how they want to learn it, and when they want to learn. Because this is an informal, self-paced course what you get out of it is up to you. You will be the one deciding what you want to do and how quickly you want to do it. Working in a group not only provides great social interaction, but can also help with motivation and staying on track.

Skill level: Beginner knitting who has mastered the knit and purl stitch and can knit a consistent gauge.

Required Materials: yarn, knitting needles, toe-up sock pattern. Many good free or low-cost patterns are available online at Ravelry. Please make sure that your pattern uses the toe-up method of construction. Knitters can use either double point needles (4 or 5), 2 circular needles, or one long circular needle (for magic loop method). I strongly recommend waiting to purchase needles and yarn after the section on selecting yarns and the overview of the methods of knitting in the round.

Technical Requirements: You must have access to the Internet with high enough speed to watch YouTube videos as long as 12 minutes.

Course Goals and Objectives

Goal 1. Learn the fundamentals of sock knitting.

  • Students will select yarns for sock knitting by examining the yarn content information on the skein wrapper or online details from the manufacturer to produce a fitted sock with enough elasticity to stay on the foot.
  • Students will select toe up sock patterns based on the recommended stitches per inch of their yarn using the yarn details provided by the manufacturer with a variation of no more than half a stitch per inch variation between the manufacturer’s recommendation and the pattern.
  • Students will measure their feet (or the person they are making the sock for) to within one-eighth of an inch using a ruler and tape measure, as appropriate.
  • Students will label the parts of a sock using proper terminology for all areas.

Goal 2. Learn the techniques for knitting socks from the toe up.

  • Students will select a method of knitting socks in the round (double point needles, two circular needles, one small circular needle, or magic loop) and knit a swatch at least 4inches in diameter.
  • Students will cast on using Judy’s Magic Cast on or the Turkish/Eastern method and knit the first two rounds making sure no stitches are twisted.
  • Students will work the gusset and heel of their sock according to their pattern with no holes or dropped stitches.
  • Students will bind off the stitches at the top of the leg using a method that will be stretchy enough to expand over the heel and leg but snug enough to stay up on the leg.

Goal 3. Learn the variations of heels and toes for socks.

  • Students will identify the different heel types using pictures of various sock heels with no penalty for mistakes and correct information and hints if the answer is missed.
  • Students will identify the different toe types using pictures of various sock toes with no penalty for mistakes and correct information and hints if the answer is missed.

Goal 4. Use social media and online tools for knitters and participate online.

  • Students will create an account on Ravelry including an avatar or photo.
  • On their Ravelry account, students will create a project page listing their yarn and pattern.
  • Students will use the advanced pattern search function on Ravelry to find free toe up sock patterns and make a list of at least 3 using the Favorites and tag functions on the website.
  • Students will upload photos of their progress and add comments on their sock to their Ravelry
  • Students will join the class’ group on Ravelry and post a weekly progress report on their sock.

Organization of the Course: The course is divided into separate blog posts, with each post covering a specific topic. Each post will provide an overview of one topic with additional instructional materials or suggested resources if you would like to find out more or need additional practice or instruction. Students can move those the course at their own pace and determine which information or techniques they are already familiar with and skip over what they do not need. As much as possible, instructional examples are provided showing both right hand and left hand knitting and English and Continental knitting methods.

Each section of the course will be contained in an individual blog post. At the bottom of each post, you will find a link to the next post in the course and the previous post in the course. You will also find links to all of the sections in the Categories section of the blog under Toe Up Socks. Each blog post will also contain tags which will help you navigate through the course and find additional information. The course introduction page will also have links to all of the posts in the

Expectations for Students: This course is about having fun while learning a new skill. The more you put into it, the more you get out of it. There isn’t a formal assessment of your work. Each section will include photographs or diagrams of what the knitted work should look like. You can use this as a self assessment to help identify areas you want to improve on or need more information or instruction. If the course is done in a group or if you participate in the Ravelry group, you can share your work with others. This peer assessment is very beneficial and highly recommended.

Knitters are encouraged to join the Ravelry group even if they are doing the course individually. Connecting with other knitters is a great way to learn and to meet other knitters. They are a wonderful source of help if you get stuck or discourage. They will also cheer on your successes. If you are knitting in a group, the members will need to agree on when and where they want to meet. Even in a group setting, it will be possible for individual members to be on different sections of the course at the same time.

What You Can Expect from Me: I will do my best to answer your questions or help you find an answer if I don’t know the answer. My focus in answering questions will be dealing with unclear directions, problems using the High Note Knits website, and corrections to information or adding information and instruction that would be helpful. I want the tutorials to be clear and easy to understand. Your feedback is very important to me because it will help me to continually improve and revise the course.

I am going to encourage you to develop your skills in researching knitting techniques, learning more about yarn and needles and other equipment, and connecting with other knitters. It is always useful to do a search of the Ravelry forums to see if anyone has asked the same question or had a similar problem and see what the response is. Also, other people in the Ravelry group may be able to answer your question if you need a quick response.

Contacting Me: Because this course is offered online for free, I can’t answer all questions and may not be able to respond in less than 48 to 72 hours. I will check for messages on Ravelry and for comments on the blog at least once a week, usually every 2 to 3 days, and will answer as many as I can. You can post a message for me on the Ravelry group, send me a private message on Ravelry or post a comment on this blog.

Copyright and Use of Materials: Read the copyright and use information for the pattern you are using. Copying patterns someone else owns is a violation of copyright. Designers work very hard to create their patterns and have an investment of time and money into their designs.

If you are using this course or any of the original materials for anything other than personal use, you must acknowledge the instructor, Wendi Watts, and the source of the materials.

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