Tuesday, March 13, 2012

How to Prepare to Teach a New Quilt Class

Student work from my Tiny Homes class.
For all you aspiring quilt teachers out there, here's a list of how to prepare to teach a new class.
  • Get a brilliant idea for the class. You must be enthused about this idea and want to share the news with the quilt world. Otherwise teaching the class will bore you to tears.
  • Make a quilt based upon the brilliant idea that best exemplifies what the brilliant idea is. Use this quilt as a teaching tool.
  • Write a class outline. This is the sequence of how you will present the brilliant idea to the students. Keep in mind that class length must include travel restrictions, lunch, and iron malfunctions.
  • Make step-outs for the class. These are step-by-step examples of how the brilliant quilt idea is executed in fabric.
  • Prepare a supply list for the students. Be exacting with the list of tools and materials.
  • Prepare a list of supplies for yourself so you appear prepared when teaching and don't look like a moron.
  • Practice teaching the class by talking out loud. Use your step-outs and go over the class several times. You will want to do this while alone.
  • Make variations on the quilt to give the students other options and to show them the possibilities.
  • Write a clever and captivating description and place it on your web site.
A flightless fowl. From my book Fusing Fun.
One last hint when teaching a quilt class: expect the unexpected. Teaching a quilt class is a lot like parachute jumping. You never know whats ahead, how fast you'll get there, or if you can expect to land safely. Good Luck!


Sandra in the UK said...

Thank you Laura! This is really helpful. I have only taught one workshop and I must admit, it was not as easy as it was in my head!!

WoolenSails said...

I used to teach, now I am just too ornery, lol.
I finished my piece and the thread bled, so today I washed it a few times and a little spot bleach and I was able to get rid of the rest of the bleed. I put a photo on my blog of the bad piece and will put the new improved version up, later.


Helen Howes said...

I have two pieces of advice for all quilt teachers:-
If you can't do it in an hour, you can't teach it in a day
Always go for a pee before you start.


Laura Wasilowski said...

Hi Debbie,
I am sorry about the red thread back dyeing on your lovely piece. Red is always a problem in dyeing. It is hard to get it to completely rinse out of the fabric or thread.

The cautionary note on my web site about the problem with red should probably be highlighted more!

I happy to hear that your efforts to wash the fabric worked. And look forward to seeing the final piece.
Best wishes,