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teaching tattingWith two more Citizen Schools trainings under my belt, the semester calendar mapped out and lesson plans written, I’ve got a pretty good idea of what the teens and I will soon be up to.

With six packages from generous tatters, a donation, my own box of de-stashed thread and shuttles, and several clever supply ideas from other tatters, we’ve got just about all the supplies we’ll need. Thank you, thank you, and thank you again to those of you who have contributed. This wouldn’t be possible without your support.

Last evening I met my staff partner who works for Citizen Schools full time and will be helping me throughout the apprenticeship with classroom management and planning etc. She seems to be really on top of things and I think we’ll work well together.

The classes themselves won’t begin for three weeks but before that can happen, we need to recruit some students. Next week the school will hold an “apprenticeship fair,” in which all of us who are teaching the apprenticeships set up booths to lure in inspire unsuspecting eager students to take our classes. Groups of students will rotate around to all the class options and we’ll each give them our pitch about how cool/awesome/nifty/useful/ridiculous our class will be and why they should take it. The students then pick their top three choices and the staff places them as well as they can.

So…that leaves me with the big question of how to inspire these students to learn tatting. Sure, you and I think it’s the best thing since sliced bread, but I still remember when bread came from a field of wheat and we had to pick each grain by hand…. Or so I probably will seem to these teenie boppers. They want the new fads, the latest and greatest, not a hundreds-of-years-old dusty lacemaking technique. Are you feeling my insecurities yet?

Just in case you aren’t, let me be clear. I’m afraid to be “stuck” in a room with 18 13-year-olds who all wish they had got into the gardening or robotics apprenticeships and weren’t “stuck” with me for twelve weeks.

Therefore I need to inspire them from the beginning to want to tat, that tatting is awesome, and that they can do it. I’m just making a wild guess that putting my hair in a bun, dragging in a squeaky rocking chair and lap afghan to demo tatting wouldn’t be the best approach, however much it might give me some warped amusement.

All right, all you tatting geniuses on the interweb, what do you think I should do? I’ve been racking my brains for three weeks and not coming up with anything very interesting, so it’s all up to you now (no pressure). The pitch is about five minutes, and is ideally:

  • Engaging
  • Uses props and interactive activities
  • Builds up excitement for the apprenticeship
  • Is easy to repeat several times to different groups of kids

Got you thinking caps on? Great. Leave comments below with your ideas. pretty please with sugar on top

Ready, set, go!

(I said please)