How to Teach In-person Crafting Classes During Covid-19 (PLUS Behind-the-Scenes Studio Tour!)

 

Today we’re going to talk about returning to in-person kids crafting classes after teaching online and we’re going to answer all the questions on your mind and share our top tips with you.

So whether you are looking to start teaching arts and crafts to kids or if you’ve stopped teaching in-person during the pandemic and are itching to get back into it, this episode is for you!

Watch the video or read the written version below.

We had to close our studio's doors for 5 months during the lockdown and were thrilled to get started again. 

Even though we embraced virtual classes during lockdown, for us there is still nothing that quite compares to in-person classes, kids laughter, hearing all the wonderful ideas, the smell of paint, seeing amazing creations and the spontaneous social engagement that comes with it.

The impact of COVID-19 has been devastating for many, all around the world. Being confronted with any setback can be hard and I have to confess I ugly cried when we had to close our studio doors. Society’s stress levels are at an all-time high, kids are feeling the pressures and many kids are stressed.  

As creatives it is our responsibility to serve, to be present and to give children and parents an opportunity to be creative, to express themselves to be part of a community and to escape from the stresses that life presents.

Not only is creativity an excellent way to escape from the stresses of modern life, but being creative actually helps us to train our brain to work and think differently. To quit thinking about our own fears, doubts and stressors and focus on what is new and original. 

If you look back at your childhood, your happiest moments were probably spent building marble runs and mud cakes, painting, building forts, or attempting to form a band. For children, using imagination and being creative is a key part of everyday life. 

Create a space where kids feel safe, where they can create and have fun, equip them with the ability to be curious and to thrive in this ever changing world. 

Back to in-person classes during Covid-19. It has been a little over 2 months since we started teaching in-person classes again.

We had a couple of doubts before we opened again:

  1. We were worried that parents would not be open to the idea of bringing their kids to in person classes and that our classes would be empty
  2. We were worried for our students’ safety
  3. We were worried for our own safety
  4. We were worried about the regulations and that it would be difficult and expensive to get everything set up and in place

If you’ve been wanting to start teaching in-person as well, I’m sure these thoughts have crossed your mind as well?

So here’s what we did:

We started by chatting to our customers. We asked them one simple question: we are thinking of opening again, would you be interested in returning?

The feedback was very positive, the majority of them said YES, PLEASE! We actually had a bit of a laugh about it because at that stage some of them were VERY keen to get their kids out of the house and creating again. I’m sure you can understand if you’ve had kids around during the pandemic.

We were thrilled about the positive response, we opened our doors and our club has been thriving since. We’ve actually had to add more classes to our schedule in the last couple of weeks to accommodate for the demand.

So for those who are holding off from starting their kids crafting club right now I want to say one thing: Covid-19 is not going to hang around forever and you should not put your dream and life on hold. Setting up a kids crafting club does not happen overnight. There is plenty for you to do in the meantime.

It is also advisable to start with hosting small classes when you start out, to practise and get used to hosting classes. Think about next year this time, look back at 2020. Imagine this could be the year that you started your club.

And for those who are itching to start up again: Sitting and waiting for the crisis to pass is not good for your business, your livelihood, the economy or for your customers who are depending on you to bring creativity and happiness to them right now.

Now more than ever, your customers need you. Showing up to bring creativity to your students is the very best thing that you can do right now.

Today I'm going to share my top tips to show you how to run a crafting class during Covid-19:

✅   Communicate with your customers. Your clients are normal people with emotions. Be human, talk to them, find out what their feelings and emotions are around in-person classes.

Use the time to connect in-person and online with your clients, you’ll create stronger customer relationships and community. Support them. If in-person classes are not an option yet, teach online. Grab the link to the Teaching Online Checklist below:

✅  Know the rules: if meeting in-person is not allowed in your country or state, don’t do it, if it is, make sure you are clued up with what is allowed and keep to those rules.

✅  Reduce class sizes to enforce social distancing: We have reduced our classes to a maximum of 8 children per class. This has enabled us to give each child their own work space, or as we call it a workstation.

If you’re just getting started with your club this is ideal because working with smaller groups is a great way to grow your confidence as an arts and crafts teacher. 

✅  Masks and entry/exit routine: We ask each person that enters our studio to wear a mask and to sanitize their hands properly upon entry and exit. Have a bottle ready at the door. If it is a requirement in your country, take their temperature and let them fill out the Covid-19 entry sheet (you can grab this online). 

✅  Separate sanitized stations: we sanitize our tables and provide each child with their own supplies/station so that no one has to share. We group families together to save space. We also give parents the choice of bringing their own aprons if they didn't feel comfy using ours. 

✅  Kids ages 6 and under need adult supervision.

✅  Open all doors and windows. We leave the doors open so that no one has to unnecessarily touch anything, and all our windows for lots of natural ventilation. If you can craft outside it’s even better! 

This seems daunting and like a lot of info, but it’s really not intimidating.

To demonstrate how easy and non intimidating this can be. In the video I pretend to be a parent coming to class with my son, Henry :-) >> Watch the video now!

Stop stressing, relax and have fun, the kids need it!

So to wrap up, let's do a quick recap on the tips:

  • Communicate with your customers.
  • Know the rules.
  • Reduce class sizes to enforce social distancing.
  • Masks and entry/exit routine.
  • Separate sanitised stations
  • Adult supervision for younger kids.
  • Open doors and windows.

So there you have it! 

Now, I’d love to invite you to join our free FB Group for anyone that loves working creatively with kids. It’s a great place to find support from other like-minded creatives, ask questions and get advice on how to build a successful kids crafting club. 

Click here to get access to the group. It’s 100% free!

Until next time, cheers!

 
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