Friday, November 6, 2009

Teacher Tawk - Thought you might want to know

Happy Students down in the studio !

A question on the Mat about tipping teachers had the most responses of any question ever asked !
I had a few things to say about teacher's pay
If you are paying $300 for attending a whole week and there are fifteen of you in the class... The camp director gets $4500. I might earn between $750 to 1000 of that. So I work for 5 days, long hours, getting you what you want to the best of my ability. Let's divide $1000 by 15 that equals $66.66 divided by 5 = 13.33 per person per day ! YIKES , Would you all even get outta bed for that ? LOL Just thought you should know ! And that is the reason I'm not teaching at rug camps anymore, the best teacher and the worst teacher, the most experienced and the least, the guide on the side, the sage on the stage, all get paid the same!

I still had some things to say which I think we should all be aware of on the subject of teaching from my point of view :

Hi Everyone,

I have a bit more time today so I'd like to expand on this topic.

You all brought up lots of good comments.

Teachers fees vary widely.

There is a general Ontario Hooking Craft Guild fee of $175 but whether the teachers demand or are given this varies even in Ontario.

Generally you can be asked by rug schools or camps to accept any where from around $125 a day to $350 a day.

Doesn't this seem like such a lot of money for a day's work ?

What isn't taken into consideration is the expenses and time incurred before class for the class participants sake alone as well as the expenses and time educating yourself as a teacher. This could be in the accustomed manner, teachers workshops or through any self development and education.

The most I've been paid at rug schools is at Caraway, $100 per student for the week. This is a better system. If I attract a full class I'm paid accordingly. In other systems the person who has 8 in their class is paid the same as someone who has 15. This is where day care wins out ahead of rug teaching.

I often said a return to my first career in day care would pay me better than rug camps. My husband pays more to go in a race for a day. Something is wrong with this picture.

At least two weeks if not more of steady prep work, traveling time need to be taken into account.

Not to mention unforseen events you will need to pay for and never be compensated for such as supplementing inadequate meals, sudden needs for adequate or quiet lodging or a need for a fan when you thought there would be air conditioning, the list is long of what could go wrong.

Most often your fees for traveling are a fixed rate. If you have a long way to go, too bad. Suddenly your family is subsidizing the rug school.

There are many other ways teachers can teach, in guild or group settings my fee was $100 a day per student. Now I charge this for studio classes, size is restricted. I like teaching quite a bit. I will continue to offer courses here in my studio and online. These suit me best. The online classes are wonderfully affordable, only $20 a lesson ! You do it when you want to, and frankly people seem to absorb the materials better.

By my reading on tipping I'm afraid people are misinformed about rug school teaching and I pray teachers are not teaching the same thing over and over without revision and expansion. Each time you teach something you should be learning something too. Depending on the participants, a similarly schemed class could vary widely and should in my mind. Prepare, prepare prepare, then settle in and be ready for anything.

No good teacher expects you to buy anything they bring.

Too bad we aren't all good !

You would be surprised how people of all kinds will under estimate their value. There are many teachers who are just glad for a job and don't take into consideration economics or who accept poor pay in the hopes wool sales will fill in the cracks. Many teachers will not talk because they fear they will not get hired or be poorly thought of by students.

There is teaching on all levels and I like to think of them in terms of regular school.

Grade school, you teach the basics.

High school, you teach about what you are good at and what you like, show and teach a deeper understanding of the basics.

University, you are deep into your subject, specializing, learning it inside and out. You teach in a way that engenders abstract thinking and problem solving with your students, you give them tools to work alone in their own expression.

You mostly you get what you pay for.

Teachers who have excused themselves from the system by charging a bit more or even a lot more are giving a deeper, usually a richer learning environment. You are not going to hear the same old same old, regurgitation of simple ideas. You will hear fresh ways to do things. You will have your mind expanded if you wish it.

Making $13.33 before expenses... I did it for fun.

But the wear and tear on me, which is my cost of supporting this system by accepting poorly paid jobs, the economics of good health and well being; the valuing of myself and my time to create - priceless

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