While this isn't the first box of homework from the Olds class (in Olds) it is the first of this year. I'm feeling weary right now so probably won't do more than just go through it, and then really start on it tomorrow. I like to get an over view of what has been sent in, then read through the written work and get a feel for the progress the student has made on this journey.
I think level one is hard for a number of reasons. It is not like a weaving workshop - the aims and objectives are different, for one thing. It is perhaps more challenging in some ways partly because the goal is to bring a consistency to the learning of the craft. The graduates of this program should all have similar basic foundations of knowledge because they are all working to the same curriculum.
Will they know everything there is to know at the end? No. Not at all. But they should have achieved the ability to think critically about the craft and their approach to achieving their intended cloth. They should be able to think through how to approach an area that they may not have encountered before. They should be able to bring creative solutions to difficulties they may encounter. They should be able to understand the basic principles of the craft, understand their equipment and materials and how and when to use the various tools.
As an instructor it is also challenging for me, too. I have to follow the curriculum and ensure everyone understands it. I need to give them the tools to go further on their own. I need to allow them to make mistakes and learn from them. I must not spoon feed them information, but encourage them to seek answers for themselves. Because sometimes my answers will not be theirs.
Change one thing, and everything can change.
Registration for Fibre Week will begin on March 1. Registration for the satellite program in Cape Breton is open now. Last I heard there were just five places left. Registration for the satellite program in Prince George should be available on the website by the end of next week, possibly earlier. Classes at Yadkin are taking registrations now.
Prince George Level one May 13-18
Prince George Level two May 20-25 (both classes are SIX days, not five as elsewhere)
Cape Breton Level one June 5-9
Old College (AB) potentially all levels June 16-22