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      Moderators needed!   12/08/2017

      Ceramic Arts Network is looking for two new forum moderators for the Clay and Glaze Chemistry and Equipment Use and Repair sections of the Ceramic Arts Network Community Forum. We are looking for somebody who is an active participant (i.e. somebody who participates on a daily basis, or near daily) on the forum. Moderators must be willing to monitor the forum on a daily basis to remove spam, make sure members are adhering to the Forum Terms of Use, and make sure posts are in the appropriate categories. In addition to moderating their primary sections, Moderators must work as a team with other moderators to monitor the areas of the forum that do not have dedicated moderators (Educational Approaches and Resources, Aesthetic Approaches and Philosophy, etc.). Moderators must have a solid understanding of the area of the forum they are going to moderate (i.e. the Clay and Glaze Chemistry moderator must be somebody who mixes, tests, and has a decent understanding of materials). Moderators must be diplomatic communicators, be receptive to others’ ideas, and be able to see things from multiple perspectives. This is a volunteer position that comes with an honorary annual ICAN Gold membership. If you are interested, please send an email outlining your experience and qualifications to jharnetty@ceramics.org.
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yappystudent

Me - Teach a Class??!

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You know how you always wonder if you could surf or skydive without ruining your life or the lives of others, but you just assume you'll never get the chance?  Well a local slipware ceramic shop owner suggested maybe I could teach a class out of her place, and I must want to because I've been thinking it over and it seems like an awesome thing to do. On the up side, my artist's resume is pretty blank despite having been a (painter/2D medium) artist for decades,  this would make it just a tiny bit longer.  I've taught myself hand building with the help of A. This site, B. Youtube, C. Pestering other students in a college hand building class because the teacher was a (expletive deleted), so surely I know a thing or two, but do I know enough to give folks their money's worth? It seems to me, even if I just answer all their beginner's questions about how to handle clay it will be a huge step up on the class I took back when that got me interested. Perhaps comparing adequate (teaching skills) with abysmal is not a good place to start from thinking I can do something. My verbal skills are OK and I'm usually fine with a wide range of ppl for limited periods of time. Also right now it sounds exciting, fun, and an excuse to network and make some friends. So far this is just a suggestion by a store owner who fires my work and seems quite sincere, before I commit, what am I missing here that should be obvious? If anyone cares to advise me I could really use it. Don't hold back, I'll probably do what I want in the end regardless but I hate walking into a situation blindly and really don't want to disappoint a bunch of potential customers for this shop either. 

Edited by yappystudent
bad sentence

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Be honest.   Most students will soon work out who you are, where you come from (artistically) and what you do or do not know. 

Don't give them a load of bull.  If you don't know the answer to a question, say so, and then find out for next week.

Smile, be happy for yourself and for them, let them handle clay, mush it up, let it get too dry, break it.

Set expectations realistically, but don't drown their aspirations.

Let them set their own standards.  Their first makes will make you (and in time them) cringe, but let them say when it's finished.

Encourage good practice with sharp edges and corners.

Set impeccable safety practices and standards.

Have a six-week plan of techniques.

 

Enjoy.

 

 

D.M.Ernst, Min, yappystudent and 1 other like this

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9 hours ago, yappystudent said:

if I just answer all their beginner's questions about how to handle clay it will be a huge step up on the class I took back when that got me interested.

Agree with everything Chilly said.

Figure out a clear definition for the class, what it is and what it is not, and market it as clearly as possible. Start thinking about the course title and course description. The snippet I quoted from you above would make a terrific class, as long as you attract the right students who are looking for exactly this. 

yappystudent likes this

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As mentioned above, don't brag, or build yourself up, let them learn by seeing you doing. Learn about you and the clay. Be enthusiastic about what you do, and when they do well, don't praise crap. 

When I started teaching adult classes, I had everyone write out a 3X5 card with name contact number, and some things about their hobbies, their experience with clay, and other interests. Final question was what they wanted to get out of this class. This allowed me to set my goals and make certain to meet their expectations. By the end of the class, they had done much more, but their expectations were met.

 

best,

Pres

yappystudent, Min and D.M.Ernst like this

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Keep in mind that because you are a beginner yourself, you're able to put yourself in their shoes quite well.  You know what's frustrating, you know where you're tripping up, and how to solve some of those problems. You are in a position to be a good guide, from that point of view. You will find that teaching is also  a fantastic way to learn, yourself.

There will always be someone who is better at this than you are. There will always be people who aren't as good as you are, too. Chilly already gave good advice about being honest, and offering what you're able to offer. Try it and see what happens!

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Guest JBaymore

Remember to present the information that you want to get across in different ways.  Different people process information differently.

Figure out how to share what you are dealing with visually,  explain it in words using lots of word pictures and analogies, and also give them sensory feedback cues and maybe some "hands on" touch (with permission first).

We tend to teach in the modality in which WE process information.  This works really well for the people that learn the same way we do.  We have to WORK at teaching to others learning styles.

best,

.....................john

 

PS:  RE:  Visual, Auditory, Kinesthetic Learning Styles

 

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