How Our Online Classes Work
I got an email from Joyce recently, asking how, exactly, our online classes work. Great question! I’m sure you’re not the only one wondering, Joyce, so I’ll answer here.
The way it currently works is this (it’s really pretty simple once you get rolling):
The day before class starts, I send invitations to participants to join the private Yahoo Group that serves as our classroom. The invitation will arrive in your email box with a link to join. Only registered class members are invited and permitted to join—that’s what makes it a “private” Group.Lessons are pdf files that are uploaded to the “Files” folder inside the Group. In the Bookmarks 101 class, which Joyce specifically asked about, the first lesson is uploaded on Day 1, and subsequent lessons are posted at the beginning of each week for four weeks. You can open and/or download the files any time after they’re posted, whenever it’s convenient for you.
The Group has a message board where we all post questions, answers, experiences, and ideas. You can choose to have individual messages sent to your email inbox, or you can have a day’s messages sent all together in one email, or you can choose to have no email sent and just read the messages online when you log in to the Group.
There is no specific time you need to be online; there are no live, real-time meetings. You can read and respond to messages on your own schedule, from anywhere in the world. In the Bookmarks 101 class, there’s a whole week to read each lesson and experiment with some of the techniques. You’re encouraged to take pictures of your work and upload them to the “Photos” folder in the Group. If you’re not sure how to do that, I can provide instructions, or you can send me your pictures via email, and I’ll upload them for you. If you are unable to take pictures, well, that’s okay, too. We do what we can do, right?
In the Bookmarks 101 class, the focus is on learning some simple stitches, adding some materials and techniques from sewing and other crafts, and then letting loose to see what happens. She who makes the biggest mess wins! No, no, no. Just kidding. Sort of. I happen to be a big fan of messes and find that the most interesting things tend to come from them.The Embroider Me! Bracelet Basics & Beyond class operates similarly, in a private Yahoo Group, but the lessons are shorter, we create a single project, and it all happens in one week.
I’ve come to see embroidery classes as my forte, and I’m creating more. A class allows me to explore not-quite-standard techniques, which I love, and the pdf format allows me to write instructions in greater detail than chart-printing permits. Plus, I can add lots of step-outs with color images, so processes are clear and easy-to-understand. I’m a writer; writing instructions is my strength and joy.
There are many ways to run classes on the Internet, and I may explore new ones in the future. Right now, this way is super-simple and effective, so I’m sticking with it.
I hope that helps. If you have more questions, please ask.