Tuesday, September 18, 2012

So you want to teach a class.

At some point (if you have been doing this for a while) someone is going to ask you to teach. It can be exciting and terrifying all at the same time. Before you agree you have to think about several things.

1. Where are you going to hold the class. Does the classroom have all the tools you will need or will the students need to bring their own tools. Does the classroom have all the safety equipment needed? Is the lighting good, chairs etc. Lots to think about.

2. Cost. What are you going to charge for your time.  Venues like Bead and Button will give you their fee schedules but most likely you will need to come up with your own fees. The best way to solve this problem is to look at industry standards. For example in my field teachers normally have fee that varies only slightly from teacher to teacher. Ask around. Remember that some teachers are more nationally known and will command a larger fee. 

My class at Beadazzled in Kansas

 3. Supplies. Are you going to sell a kit or will the studio provide the kit at an extra cost, or will the kit be included in the fee.

4. Who will take the class registration, handle the fees and promote the class. Are you traveling? Who will make your travel plans? Are room and board included? Make sure you know exactly how much you will be paid ahead of time. Some teachers have a contract to spell out every detail. It's not a bad idea.

5. Prepare, prepare, prepare. Make sure you have a handout for your students so they have an idea what you are covering in the class. Make sure your students bring a notebook to take notes if needed. Add great tips and hints you have learned while developing this technique. 

6. Ok here come the tricky part. When I am teaching I always encourage my students to use what I am teaching. That is why they are taking the class. I hope of course that they will use the skills I have taught them and make them their own but if not they are welcome to make the beads I taught in class. The only thing I do ask is that they DO NOT teach these skills to others. I make my living by teaching and have spent numerous hours developing and perfecting my beads. It would hurt my income to have people out there teaching my beads to others for free. 

Teaching can be a very good experience if you are prepared. I have been teaching for 13 years and I have loved every minute.


Julie Holmes said...

Great post Libby! I start my first teaching assignment in 3 weeks! So excited/nervous....but looking forward to this new chapter for me.

Kristen said...

Awesome post and a lot to consider! Thank you!

Kelli said...

Great post!! I've been asked, but have had to decline due to a busy schedule. Am hoping to do a small workshop with the ladies at church when the show scuffle slows down

Artisan Beads Plus said...

This is great advice! I hope to be able to teach something jewelry related one day.... when I'm done with my middle school career (home stretch!)

mairedodd said...

the fact that you have been teaching so long is absolutely clear - you are always very thorough in whatever you discuss... it is a privilege for us when you share your experience...

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