Monday, July 8, 2013

A First: Teaching a Card Crafting Class

Hi! It's no surprise, I love Etsy. As I've previously mentioned, I work at this wonderful online marketplace that supports an amazing community of artists, designers, and entrepreneurs. As I've also mentioned, I also started two shops selling paper goods and jewelry, as it's been a big dream of mine to embark upon.

What's equally amazing is that it's a workplace full of talented souls bursting with creativity. So much so that we have classes for employees, taught by employees. This means I learn to sew or how to make lip balm from my fellow coworkers. How cool! Since I look forward to learning from some of the classes, I decided to also give back and hold a class too.

This was the first time I ever held a class, for reals. And I was so surprised by the ease of it all and most of all, I loved being inspired by my peers and connecting with them. The class was a card make and take session where I showed various techniques with masking, stamps, heat embossing, and watercoloring with Gel Sticks.

I had a bit of the jitters going into it not know if people will be interested in learning the techniques. Having never taught a class before, I had a lot of self doubt. But here's what I found to be effective for my class:

  • Define the aim of the class
  • Decide how much time and how many students
  • Develop a syllabus around the aim
  • Thoroughly budget and account for supplies and materials
  • Get all supplies and prepare materials once you have a head count
  • Send out communications reminding students of what to bring and expect
  • Expect set-up to take 30-60 minutes depending on size of the class
  • Expect a few no-shows as well as unexpected late sign-ups
  • Get to know the students and gauge comfort level with the tools
  • Demonstrate each technique and a final product for inspiration
  • But let the students be creative and design as they wish -- one thing I strived for was to have every student create something entirely different from the next
  • Keep track of time to ensure all techniques are demonstrated as promised in the syllabus
  • Help and engage with students to be inspired by them and their interpretation of the techniques
  • After the class, send supplies lists/recommendations and an overview of the techniques to all students thanking them for their participation

Not bad for a newbie teacher, if I may say so myself. :) I seriously had so much fun, I am looking forward to teaching more classes in the future. Do you have any good tips for teaching classes? I'd love to hear them.

Thanks for stopping by!
- KRAFTY pearl


  1. Excellent pointers. Here at work we train end users and something I've found useful is having the participants complete an anonymous evaluation card. It serves as a compilation of lessons learned for the next class ;)

  2. How rude of me .... CONGRATULATIONS on having a successful first crafting class! We all have loads to learn from you.