[hackerspaces] How To Teach a Hackerspace Class?
doug at hackpittsburgh.org
Wed Nov 14 18:31:31 CET 2012
On 11/14/12 12:08 PM, Michael Zeltner wrote:
> Excerpts from Jerry Isdale's message of 2012-11-14 09:32:52 +0100:
>> Hackerspaces quite often have classes, right?
> I'd say sharing not only infrastructure but also educating each other is one of
> the pillars of interaction at spaces ...
Agreed. This year at HackPittsburgh we'll have done 12 classes (we were
shooting for one/month, and by end of year we'll have averaged that).
Three of the classes haven't happened yet, but are advertised and up for
ticket sales so they will be happening.
>> sometimes these are for members only, but many spaces teach public classes as
>> a revenue stream (and to build community).
All of our classes are open to anyone who can satisfy the prerequisites.
We charge to cover cost of materials (and food, if provided) and a
little bit more; members get a discount so they're paying for cost of
> Just to put it out there as well: there are spaces which have a no-charge
> policy. Whatever happens at Metalab is free, including "renting" a room for
> the meeting, whatever that may be for (Esperanto class, soldering workshop,
> counter-lobbying organisation meeting ...)
We also open our space for outside groups to meet, so long as they are
free and open to the public. For insurance reasons they're restricted to
use of tables, chairs, internet; no tool use that might cause injury
(saws, soldering irons, etc). Given that our due structure is
inexpensive and that we don't have \sugar daddies, we're not in a
position to offer free classes where there are materials expenses.
We also, sans holidays, have a free and open to the public event every
Friday night. The event is designed, like our classes, to get folks in
to see our space and our community, and also to educate members and
non-members alike. Often our events are put on by members, but other
times, they're put on by outside folks. We don't pay for these events,
and if they have materials costs (not usually), we pass the hat or some
members will chip in before hand.
>> How have you prepared for teaching a class?
>> Have you tried teaching when you were only a bit more advanced than the
We don't have any formal process for vetting teachers, and usually
members are hesitant to step up and volunteer unless they're pretty
versed in what they're teaching, so that hasn't been much of an issue.
It's been more the case of convincing them that they do know enough to
Hope this helps!
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