Hands-on learning activities for real-life learning, classroom fun, or field day exploration.
Workshop List (details)
Rocket Mass Heaters:
Year-Round Building Blocks:
Welcome!We are hands-on teachers of creative, ecological, and practical skills.
We work with all ages, including teachers, students, families, and festivals.
Although at this point in our careers, our work is tending more to the expert level (train-the-trainer, public speaking, writing guidebooks, and high-performance project consulting), we still love to squeeze in some creative classroom time with our favorite communities.
Please see this year's schedule for possible dates in your area.
Some options include self-teaching, peer-to-peer "study groups," MakerSpace, or a local instructor leading the basics and introducing our expertise through video, Skype, or speaker-phone Q&A.
We enjoy our work and play, and we hope you do too.
The following topics are particularly suitable for a 1 to 4 hour introductory course.
- Ivy Basketry (traditional crafting with invasive and native plants)
- Fairy Houses (natural materials, mini-cob cottages or found-art creativity, super fun.)
- Dirty Secrets: Earthen Art for All Ages (Clay Paints, non-toxic fresco, may include fairy houses or sculpture if time allows.)
- Naturally Creative Holiday Crafts (Pysanky eggs, wreaths and swags, paper snowflakes, harvest table decorations)
- Practical Knots for Impractical Situations (pirate, sailor, or outdoor/survival themes)
- Fire Science (Gourmet Campfire Cooking, Evolution of Fire, Smokeless Campfire Safety).
Nature-Based Arts and Crafts:
Ivy baskets, wool spinning and felting, Pysanky eggs, compostable Christmas wreaths, edible flowers, paper lace, home-made paints and dyes ... Take recycle-art to a whole new level with fully natural, elegant, and affordable crafts. These arts can be learned in an hour, and take a lifetime to fully explore.
Beta-Testers Needed: Snowflakes and Paper Lace; Felting Fuzzbies
Creative By Nature - brochure
Explore physics, chemistry, botany, ecology, and the science behind fascinating phenomenal like green slime, art materials, fire, or weather. We can work directly with students, or provide training for facilitators interested in enhancing their hands-on inquiry skills. Some of our favorite lesson plans are available at OMSI, Caveman Chemistry, and TOPS Learning Systems., and we teach classes through MHCC, TrackersNW, THPRD, and other local organizations.
Beta-Testers Needed: DIY Weather Station activities
Ropework, navigation, weather lore, fish tales, making toy boats, and boater safety are among the topics we can offer as guest instructors for short classes. "Knotical Nauledge" makes a great piratical addition to a community festival.
We can also talk about building full-scale boats, or taking excursions, but these options are better as a full-day or longer workshop.
Beta-Testers Needed: None currently.
Natural Building Skills:
Beta-Testers Needed: Rocket Mass Heater Building Code review, apprenticeship available in RMH prototyping.
This class is best done in an outdoor setting with some bricks, a shovel, and a bare earth firepit. Sand, fireclay mortar, kindling, and stovepipe are also handy for us to show traditional stoves and hearths from around the world.
For indoor classrooms, we can also offer a slide show version, with optional mini-fire props (candle or alcohol flames) if allowed under your building safety requirements.
Course Formats and Prices:
We specialize in the art of hands-on education: finding the best activities and mentoring styles, to make complex information accessible and fun. Our topics tend to be practical, ecological, open-ended, and creative.
These topics are generally available in a 1- to 4-hour format. We adjust the content and course description to suit the situation. We can work with most ages, experience levels, and venues. When you call to set up a class at your location, please tell us about your goals and facilities, and we can choose the appropriate range of outdoor/indoor, classroom only, and AV-enhanced presentations.
We offer both direct teaching (successful with students aged 3 to about 98, so far), and facilitator training (curriculum, materials, and practice for teachers, homeschooling parents, and child-care providers).
Pricing: We generally require a $50 minimum, and expect to receive $50-65 per instruction hour for individual on-site classes. (Supplies and handouts, ordinary prep and cleanup are included in that price).
Discounts are available for multiple classes scheduled together, for repeat clients, and by helping with 'beta-testing' for selected activities.
Please contact us to schedule a class, or for more information.