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propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

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  • propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

    Yesterday i stopped by michaels hobby to see if i could find pastel ls for my shelve cowboys elves and Indians,
    the paints made by plaid labeled Craft smart and priced @2 for a buck. i bought 10.00 worth...

    walking to the counter leaving a trail of 2 oz paints a gal, worker there chased me down with my paints i dropped. and asked me what i was working on now, as we usually chat bout crafty things i usually share my ideas with her. and bring a carving or two by to show off my progress.

    the gal looked at the little carvings and did oh how cute! squeal then said you dont mind if i show them to somebody..
    .. i said no and she went to the classroom and came back with the manager in tow...

    that was when i got propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts to do a beginners carving class,,

    the proposition was they would put up flayers advertise and charge $10.00 for each student, I would get the classroom for 1 hour and receive $9.00 for each student that signed up for the class,


    i dont know what im getting into here, it seams too good to be true,

    beginners arnt equipped with tools. gloves or materials, if i got to buy 15 knives, materials Kevlar gloves etc... i cant do it.

    anybody ever done one of these or can give me some advise...

  • #2
    Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

    I can't give any advice, but am very interested in seeing what others have to say. My biggest concern would be, "Who's liable if a student gets injured?"

    Whatever you decide to do, congratulations on getting asked to do this! It is a nice compliment.



    • #3
      Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

      Think the folks at Michaels would be the ones at risk. I'm not an attorney but since you would be contracted by Michaels, it would seem that they would have to take responsibility. Most carving instructors don't supply tools and equipment. You might want to put together a short list of tools that would be required to take the class. If you get closer to putting something together, you might want to pass it by an attorney but that also takes bucks. Take all I've said here, a dollar and go buy yourself a cuppa joe, while you contemplate it. Good luck.


      • #4
        Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

        Included in your class description should be a either a "materials list", or a "materials fee" on top of the class fee. That way, you can buy the beginners set of tools complete with stropping piece and safety glove for them (maybe from Rick) and have them at the first class when you begin. Or, if you don't want to put out that money (that would be non-refundable up front class fee), then you could REQUIRE that they bring tools that are EXACTLY what you want them to have.
        We have had some folks arrive at out woodcarvers gathering here with tools that were not fit to carve soap with, and they get very dissappointed. Teaching, is teaching with proper tools. It begins that quickly.
        Now, I just went through the process of being propositioned by the local college to teach a sculpture class that would be accredited. It was a no-go, because I have no degree and therefore, cannot be accreditted by a State's ok, private instruction pays more anyway. My point is, that my outline for the class included a materials and tools list that was very specific for relief carving with really good tools. I was going to supply the wood, but even that was included in the materials fee. I hope I am making sense for you.
        I say, go for it. Thomp, you have so much experience, and fun stories to tell, and you have so much "horse sense" that it would be well worth the $10.00 + materials to spend some time under your instruction.
        Just my 2 ok, 7 cents.


        • #5
          Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

          Work out the details Thomas, and go for it. How long a drive is it from Ohio to your Michaels store for the classes??? Tom H


          • #6
            Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

            Jillsy & Garon, thanks for the input, yes i am certainly highly elevated in self worth today not depressed as usual.
            and feeling pretty proud of my carvings,
            to beat it all they were not painted yet.. just carved and detailed with a wood burner.

            But like i told the gal i have a fear of public speaking, in front of strangers, guess i could get over that.
            for an hours work at $9.00 a head

            but one slip with a knife and the doctor will get all the profits for stickes...hummm i got to learn more bout this


            • #7
              Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

              i could beat my head against the wall on this but as mentioned it will be a beginners class, looking at something like a cub scout carving thing,
              a very simple carving like ricks Santa ornament where few tools other than safety equip, and a knife or exacto knife would be needed to keep it cheap..
              then warnings and safe and harmless wavers would have to be signed. cuz your going to get one dummy stab his leg or something.

              but buying beginners sets would be more intermediate or advance. and have to be a money up front thing i couldn't finance something like 20 carving sets at $40.00 each materials and such. and this Michael's dont have enough tools or wood on the shelves to supply a single 10 person class,

              lots to ponder before i set sail on this course.
              thanks for the outline Thor and the support, comradary in the course of this endeavor.

              tom H ,
              are you thinking of coming to a class or just trying to horn in hahaha???
              if you want a lesson stop by anytime i can teach you everything i know over a cup of coffee.. if i dont get nervous enough to get to stuttering. and mumbling....

              as to how far it is,? my wife the traveler. said its only a 10 hour plane ride if you go through Memphis Tenn they always get a layover there..


              • #8
                Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

                Thomas, Not mush here but I wiould limit the class size as if it is truely a beginners class, you will be helping them all and more than 5 or 6 on an inexperienced instructor, that hour can be a long time. Another question is, "Are you ready to teach a class"? adults beginners are different thatn children say like CUB Scouts or even Boy Scouts. Keep it to basics, Safety first, proper way to hold a knife, basics cuts, stop cuts,etc, then what time is left, start the project, I believe in the KIS theory, "Keep It Simply". Rick's Santa is a great beginner's project. Have handouts on safety, how to make the cuts and you need to ask Rick's permisson if you use his Santa. I don't think there would be a problem but since you are using his Santa, make up your own tutorial. Nothing like getting someone upset if you use their tutorial and project without permission.
                All I can say is Best wishes in whatever you decide to do.


                • #9
                  Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!


                  Congrats! I used to teach first aid and rescue classes for the rescue squad where I volunteered. I enjoyed it immensely. Yes, it was a lot of work preparing for them in the beginning, and nerve wracking, too. But once you've taught a class and seen the results of passing your knowledge onto to someone else, all the headaches disappear. There's nothing like showing someone how to do something, and seeing that light go on--you'll see that look of "OH! I got it!" and you know you done right. You will have such a great feeling that you will want to teach again.

                  Here's a few suggestions:

                  KISS-Keep It Simple Sam

                  Since it is a beginner's class, why not keep it limited to the use of a carver's knife--maybe even a pocket knife--a class on whittling. You can call it carving but teach them whittling. I'm convinced that you can do a lot with a good, sharp knife. So, that makes life a little easier on you. Even if someone shows show up with an old dull knife, you show them how to sharpen it on the first night. That'll really impress the heck out of 'em. I'm sure you have a few extra knives lying around that you don't really use, so now you can put them to use as loaners in the class in case someone shows up unprepared. Or, just have Michael's supply the knife as part of the fee for what--an extra ten dollars for a bench knife? Not a problem. Sandpaper, and cardboard and strop compound is all you need to sharpen and hone them.

                  Now for the project. Break out your books or magazines, and look for basic carving projects. The project should be one that is easy and will give quick results--like you said--the boy scout projects are perfect--pins, tie holders, magnets--they're all within easy reach as far as materials--Michael's should have them. You can also go outside the box--use bars of soap. That'll be easy, make it interesting, and again, I believe Michael's has the materials for making soap--so use the same blocks of soap making material. If not, use wood eggs, balls, blocks, etc. Teach them to make the few basic cuts of carving, use those cuts to do some simple carving, glue the blocks of wood together, and BANG! You've got a toy truck, train, car, etc. Or, you can do the "little people" carvings--like the link I've included here.

                  Use 1x1x12 instead of 7/8x7/8x3--easier to get and easier for the student to hold. Then all they need to do is cut off the carving and start the next one. With some imagination, you can even use a dowel which might save some carving time.

                  As far as being nervous, pretend you're talking to a few people about carving. Show and tell them what you do. Use your work as examples--props, so to speak. Show them how you go about putting an idea together, and sketching it on wood, and finally, carving it. So, Thomas, what I'm saying is talk about what you know. If you can do that on the first night, you'll have them on your side, you'll have their interest, and you'll have the beginnings of a carving club--all that and getting paid, to boot! And once you start, you'll be so busy talking, you won't have time to be nervous. Now, that's neat! GO FOR IT!!

                  And if you need any help, I'm here, as well as a lot of other people who'll be more than happy to see you succeed! So, as I say, got a question? Ask!


                  • #10
                    Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

                    Thomas, It seems like your biggest concern is someone injuring themselves, and it should be, there's nothing worst then having somebody cut themselves, or even worst, have the instructor cut themselves, trust me , I have experienced both! Having a liability release form that students sign before a class begins is a good idea, this supposibly, waives the right of any student whom has signed it to sue for any medical expenses or streses that may result from any injuries subdued at the time of the class., I would ask Michael's if they have such a form or could possibly have one drawen up.

                    Also have a specific detailed description of the tools needed and recommend a safety glove for the off hand, you cant make them wear it, but must mention it. This should all be included in the flyer that Micheal's distributes.
                    It would be a good idea, that you type up the class description the way you would want it to read, with the tool list, and include a small photo on the finished carving in one of the upper corners of the flyer next to the class anouncement, also you may want to include your phone number and or email address so potential students can contact you with any questions they may have about the class or tools. Once you get this flyer together at home take or mail it to Micheal's for thier review.
                    The day of the class , arrive early, sit in the classroom, walk around it, familiarize yourself with your surroudings, do some visuallization exercises about instructing the class.
                    Set up a disply of some of your favorite carvings along with a few exsamples of the carvings you will be instructing on at a table in front of the class room or off to the side, This gets people motivated to talk carving and on projects they may be working on at the time. This also could promote future classes on subjects students may be interested, private instruction or a class room setting?
                    As far as speaking in front of strangers goes, just remember they are all there to learn a skill that you possess, and a willingness to share with them this skill, so that they to may also enrich thier lives with a passtime enjoyed by thousands, so just relax and be yourself, and let your carving do the talking.
                    What a great adventure for you, congratulations and have fun.


                    • #11
                      Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

                      Ken & bob,

                      Since my last post on this i been on michaels website they have a message board and on there a woman posted a yahoo group of michaels instructors , i joined in and have been reading on their internal problems,

                      most of it is WAAH & Whine, and spoiled people wanting to have it all given to them, and then be paid for it. as well.
                      michaels pays 2 hours for you so prepare for the class, some say they wernt getting paid and its hard to get the managers (EC)to help them with stock materials and tools.

                      nothing was mentioned about where these folks are but im sure its not in this town..

                      i dont want to get tied up in other folks problems to make an impression on this subject for that's the worst way to enter an endeavor, half cocked in the wrong direction, but somethings going on there,

                      some went on to the advertisement of there own classes in the news papers on their own, printing up hand bills and such,

                      (i stated Something like ricks snowman, as an example in simplicity)
                      and i surely know enough to ask before i was to use a tutorial, rick has became quite a friendly feller, i cant say friend, but he outs up with my constant stupid questions, and accomodates me when i buy supplies, i surely wouldn't do anything to compromise his trust and friendship...

                      i think a minimum of a 2 hour class would be necessary to begin with, if they brought or bought new knives it would take at least an hour to get them all ready to carve with, of course i could bring my 8 inch water grinder and 1" belt stave off all that wasted time,

                      Bob, as in the service we all taught the younger replacements the trade, i was training NCO for 3 years which was just coordination between the need for training, the supervisor, and arranging who got the training when, as well as keeping up with the records,
                      some on hand training amongst the supervisors on regulation changes and record keeping, and some skill level tasking inspections.

                      but it was never classroom environment.

                      carving soap and wax was mentioned, well i never did make anything out of soap its too brittle.

                      ill get with the folks at michaels and see what is involved in their classes, and how their system works, heck who knows this might be a way for me to get a carving club started around here, we got the interest, i cant carve at the doctors office with my little cigar box of tools anymore folks introduce themselves as soon as they see what im doing, and and i got to stop to talk.....

                      so there is an interest here, and michaels might be the place for us to get started... $10.00 a meeting wouldn't be too much to pay for membership and it would give a meeting place habitable with electricity...

                      this is mostly ramblings at the present
                      I do appreciate all the info and suggestions,
                      i just guess ill have to learn more about the administrative side of it.

                      i dont think it will be a quick and easy thing, the 90% will be earned it looks like. before and after the classes.

                      mark you posted some great ideas, think ill print out this forum for reference in ideas for a plan... and thanks for the confidence you have in me... I'm getting to think the public speaking will be the easiest thing this class will involve....

                      thanks again all.....


                      • #12
                        Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

                        Thomp ..... Congratulations son, go for it. You will enjoy the experience, and I am sure the students will.

                        It sounds like others have covered the usual bases for you and you have considered them, good advice. All I can offer is for you to be yourself! Relax and enjoy the sessions. Prepare what you are going to cover on a single sheet of paper before you go, just a list of points you want to make: safety, sharpening, wood, grain, stop cuts....or whatever, just to have as a reminder so you don't forget in the heat of the class. Keep it by you and review it before you let them go.

                        Beginners are great, full of enthusiasm and willing to learn. Give them plenty of time for questions once you get rolling. You're going to do fine, just think of them as a classroom full of friends you want to share your skills with and soon they will be.


                        Before they slip me over the standing part of the fore sheet, let them pipe: "Up Spirits" one more time.


                        • #13
                          Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

                          You've gotten some good advice here. Just a couple of additions: Michaels has a good selection of Exacto knife handles and blades. Sort through them to find some that are good enough, and cheap enough, to work for a student. They're also sharp enough that all they really need is a little honing. You could get Michaels to give you a piece of suede leather you can cut into strips just the width of some paint stirrer stickes from the local paint store or Home Depot/Lowes. Glue the leather to the paint stirrers, apply a few strokes of your green honing compound stick (or yellow, or white, or...) and the first 15 minutes of class is how to hone an Exacto blade to make it really sharp. As to the gloves, almost anything is better than nothing, so just specify that students must bring a pair of leather gloves with them to the class or they won't be admitted. So, now you have knives, strops, and gloves (they can wear gloves on both hands, since they don't have thumb guards); all they need next is a pencil, a pattern, and a piece of wood.

                          Not to be too cynical or anything like that, but the more things you can have the student buy at Michaels (such as the knives and gloves), the more Michaels' management will want the class and want to cooperate with you.

                          Practice carving the pattern yourself using the exact tools and gloves you ask the students to have, so you'll be comfortable at the first class. At the second class, bring your electric grinder/strop, your set of Rick's beginner tools, your Butz detail knife, etc., so the students can see what will really help carve their best in the future. Also for the second class, have a handout with things on such as the address, phone number, web URL for the nearest Woodcraft, Woodcarvers Supply, Rick, or anyone else you think might have good stuff for the to buy - saves them trying to write it all down while your have to slowly spell everything.

                          Since you were a training NCO, you should already know how to teach a class, but if you're still not comfortable, just pick out a single student and talk to him/her for the first minute; then, shift to another student and talk to him/her for the next minute, etc. Maintain eye contact with the one you're talking to while you're talking to them, and the whole class will think you're wonderful (because you will be!)

                          I was an instructor in the Navy (teaching Marines, Army, and foreign military), as well as teaching a community college class as a civilian. It gets easier every time you do it. When I first taught Marines, I was petrified; when I finished, I used to start the class with "It's oh-8-hundred, and time to start - for you Marines, that means Mickey's little hand is one the 8 and his big hand is one the 12." That usually got their undivided attention...

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                          • #14
                            Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

                            thanks bob and cladue for the confidence..

                            claude its not hard to teach someone that is under your control or the control of the ucmj... they got to listen or spend the night in the round bar hotel.. haw..

                            i do like your ideas on exacto my preferance is excell in throw away tools. the blades are heavier but not as heavy as the warner blades.. and about the same price as exacto..
                            plus there is several small gouge blades and v gouges available, that could be set into wooden handles which i made 40 of recently in the style of flexcut.

                            the bring your own gloves and i could get thumb guards from the sweing centers, and (veltrap) sports wrap to cover the high impact spots on the gloves and thumbgards,
                            (pete leclair uses masking tape.)

                            im reding more of the lesson plans and such as michels has a board and yahoo has a message area for micheals instructors, mostly belly aches, but some information that makes me wonder whats really up... ill know more soon as im going to meet with the manager tomorrow to get the skinny on this class thing.

                            i wanted to start a club here at the house but my 3 car garage hasent came home yet.. its still out there in the world aimlessly lost.

                            thanks again fellers....


                            • #15
                              Re: propositioned at michaels hobby & crafts HELP!!

                              Thomp..... while reading your replies over again, I believe you have the solution for your carving club meeting location at hand. Use Michaels classroom, if they are willing to let you use it, and if it is convieniently located . I'm sure they would be more than happy to if you talk to them about it. Might it be a possibility? Is it's location convienient for traffic to the room without disrupting the store? Just a thought. I'm going through the same thought process trying to find a home for our newly formed club.

                              Before they slip me over the standing part of the fore sheet, let them pipe: "Up Spirits" one more time.