Classes and helping out

I would like to teach woodworking classes. I have some ideas-kitchen cabinet making, frame and panel doors using a router or shaper, dovetailing by hand and machine,stool making, boxmaking, as well as other projects or classes designed to teach a specific skill–like spindle turning. How do I get started? I would like to also make myself available to members if they want any individual woodworking help. Finally, if the makerspace needs any help with set up, maintaining, or repair of its woodworking tools, I would like to help.


Thanks for bringing this up. We’re very eager to offer more classes, and the things you’re suggesting sound great. I’ll explain how we have generally put classes together so far.
We have two general types of classes: the “taster”, which is a 3-4 hour single session, and multi-session (once per week typically) for 3-5 sessions. For a taster, we usually charge $65.00 for the public, and $55.00 for members. The cost of multi-session classes depends on how many sessions. And of course the material cost factors in as well.
Now not everything needs to be a class with that kind of structure. If something is more amenable to a demonstration or “clinic” approach, we can do that, too. That could be something offered for little or no money, potentially.

To get a class off the ground, we need to flesh out these details:

  • What’s the scope of instruction and end result? (Build a stool, etc.)
  • How many people can you accommodate? (What’s the minimum needed to offer it, and what’s the maximum upper limit?)
  • What are the tool requirements? (For example, shared table saw and jointer, and hand tools for each person)
  • What materials are needed, where do we get them, and what’s the cost?
  • Where in the shop would we run it, and how much room would it take up?
  • How many helpers do you need, and what do they do?

Classes so far have always been somewhat informally put together, but we’re trying to get better at this. If you can think about the above points, and then bring that to a monthly Area Heads meeting, that will get the ball rolling. We would probably want a trial run with a few of us to see how it goes.

We are open to all kinds of teaching and learning opportunities and formats, so if you have something else in mind, we’re happy to hear it.