Thursday, October 6, 2011

Teaching Beginners

This is the month of teaching. Yesterday evening I started an new evening class for beginners here in our town, and I will be teaching weekend classes in two different locations this coming and the following weekend.
For several years I had been teaching a sort of ongoing evening course, growing more and more advanced, but in the spring I decided they were advanced enough to set off on their own and forced them to ‘graduate’ and start their own informal group. At first I had thought that I would not start with another beginner’s class, because I was afraid that the potential participants had already been here. But when several people approached me that they were interested in learning how to do patchwork, I decided to give it another try. It’s a small group, only five people, four of which I had never met before, and all of them from the ‘younger’ generation. (Not that I asked any of them their age...)
I still remember vividly how it was when I got attracted to patchwork and learned how to use the rotary cutter and the ruler, and found out about how easy it could be to make a nine patch by simply sewing two different strips together. And I love opening up this world of patchwork to complete newcomers, even if I am not usually sewing traditional patterns anymore and have outgrown the floral prints that many beginners typically use.
So yesterday they learned to do a four patch (and a double four patch), and a nine patch. They were shown the principle of a double nine patch, too, but there wasn’t enough time to actually proceed and make one. And all of them need to get a cutting mat and rotary cutter and ruler, first, too, for which I am placing a combined order today.
They were all happy when they went home, and I enjoyed their excitement and joy of fabrics. It will be a nice group to teach, and it gives me a good feeling that I will be involved in getting them started.

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