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Preparing to Teach

Preparing to Teach

If you teach classes, you already know how much work it is to prepare for a class. But for those of you who haven’t tried your hand at teaching, I thought you might be interested in the preparations that go on before a single student is taught a thing. My friend Paula and I are going to teach a couple of classes at our local community college, FVCC in early June. Today we spent all day preparing. That doesn’t count the time we have already spent planning on what to teach, filling out forms for the college and making a Power Point presentation.

Power Point Presentation

I worked up the Power Point presentation over a month ago and it would have been fairly straight forward if I remembered how to use the program. But I hadn’t used Power Point in a number of years so it slowed me down a bit. I spent at least three hours putting it together and then I had to have someone else upgrade it to Power Point 2010. The equipment at the college seems to be a bit ahead of my Power Point 2003. I never see the point in upgrading software if it still works.

Readying Class SuppliesWe headed down to Camas Creek Yarn as Paula works there and has an in for getting our supplies for the classes. The supplies are included in the cost of the class as that’s the way the college wanted it. In my prior classes, supplies were purchased in advance and just a supply list was given. So we spent several hours getting all the supplies together to put in bags so each student will have a “supply kit”.

Paula Measuring Pre-YarnHere’s Paula measuring out different colors of pre-yarn for the kits.

Confusing Ourselves

We were picking different colors to go with a variety of colors of roving. We needed 4 yards per pack but somehow got confused and started doubling the amount of pre-yarn we needed. Who knew counting was so difficult?

Picking Out Silk Roving

Next we added in some silk roving and silk hankies. So downstairs we went to figure out what colors would go with our color combinations we already had.

Silk HankiesHere are the colors of silk hankies that we chose. Paula dyed these.

Assembly LineThen we set up an assembly line to make our packs. Each pack contains Imperial wool roving, silk hankies, hemp fiber, silk noil, pelsul locks, silk roving, merino roving, pre-felt and pre-yarn. We are going to be doing three projects in the class and there are probably enough embellishments to do 20 projects. But we thought the students would appreciate extra embellishments for later use at home.

Ready to be BaggedThese are all the supplies in one kit.

All Bagged Up

Here’s our pile of bagged kits. I am making a supply list that will be stapled to the bag. But I need to make up some business cards to go in them as well. I’m not sure why I don’t have any of those yet?? (I guess I don’t listen to my own advice after writing all those Marketplace Monday posts.)

Felt Trivet Sample

Then Paula and I spent the rest of the day making samples for the class. We’re starting with a flat piece of felt with embellishments. This one is mine with a silk hankie, hemp, pre-yarn and pelsul locks.

Felt Trivet Sample

This one is Paula’s. She always adds more embellishments than I do. She used pre-felt, silk roving, silk hankie, pre-yarn, flax, silk noil and pelsul locks I think.

Finished SoapsThen we made felted soap. Mine’s orange and Paula’s is green.

Felted RocksAnd the last samples are felted rocks. Paula’s is on the left and mine is the hairy one on the right. All in all, we’ve spent around 12 hours preparing for a 6 hour class. This doesn’t include the time we’ll spend gathering up all the equipment needs, packing up the car and the preparations of setting up the day of the class. I like to be prepared, so I’m not complaining, just letting you know that the time a teacher spends is not just in the classroom. Hopefully, we’ll get enough students signed up for the class to run. Right now, we still have openings so if you’re in northwest Montana, we’d love to have you join us. Just click on the link in the first paragraph to sign up. 

Are you teaching classes? What are your thoughts about class preparation? Any tips for other teachers? We’d love to hear your thoughts. Do you take classes? Do you have suggestions for how teachers could be better prepared or suggestions for better teaching methods? We’d love to hear those too.

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