Being a Cake Minds

Skills Support Teacher

This is an exciting and optional addition to being an Accredited Cake Minds Teacher.

Being a Cake Minds Skills Support Teacher is optional element that you can step into at any time, it will give you the opportunity to widen your student base and bring in additional income. 

As a Cake Minds Skills Support Teacher you will run regular online sessions for groups of no more than five students, supporting them with their classes and other sugarcraft work - it is meant to be upbeat, uplifting, fun and light-hearted - which is why I am providing you with some start up topics and idea's

One of the best ways to find out more is take a look at the pages with information for students that are interested in signing up - HERE

Our face to face classes offer the chance for a more interactive social chit chat, but that gets lost in virtual classes, even small ones, as the focus is on learning, and because we offer students the chance to learn with a number of teachers it means that the regular contact with one teacher can be missing - and this is one of the founding principles for Cake Minds and the most important reasons I founded Cake Minds.  I don't want us to loose this crucial element of Cake Minds as we move into online teaching.

This element is generally based on remote students, however, should your own local students be interested in this, it is something you could offer.

Benefits to you as a Skills Support Teacher

  • Build you own online community 

  • Student members pay a subscription to you - £2.50 a week / £10 per month = £50 a month for each group session (based on 1 x session a month for approx 1 hour - it is up to you if you do more shorter sessions) - for this they get a heap of other benefits too - magazine etc

  • A wider pool of students 

Quick Guide

  • Decide when you are going to run your Skill Support Sessions - let Rhu know so that they can be added to the Skill Support Session timetable

  • Find students

  • Arrange Payments for these sessions

  • Send students information and link to Welcome Edition of the magazine 

How do you find students ?

As a team we will continue to market and promote Cake Minds to spread the word. Students coming directly to the website will see if they can find a teacher in their area to join for face to face classes, but if that is something they are unable to do for numerous reasons, then we can offer the chance to be a remote student, they can decide which teacher they join or they can contact HQ and I will allocate them a teacher, this gives a fair playing field.

Payments

 

Once a student contacts you it is up to you as a teacher to arrange payments.  Leigh Bray uses an app called Go Cardless which allows you to collect regular payments, change them, add to them and a number of other options and at a fraction of the cost of paypal, so this may be worth considering for the Skill Share Session payments.

OK so what am I going to do at these meetings ?

Being apprehensive about the meetings is quite natural, that is why I am providing you with some fun idea's to break the ice.

I have no doubt that as these sessions progress and you get to know each other it will become easier, with students bring their own suggestion on what they would like to learn more about, or area's they find tricky from the classes. 

We want to ensure these sessions have a purpose to them, it will help you focus but without too much pressure.

I cannot stress enough we are not promoting these sessions as, or should they be, a place to offload, they are an escape from an ever confusing, busy and crazy world.  Although Cake Minds is founded on wellbeing and mindfulness we are not qualified to deal with students mental health issues - there is some guidance on where to signpost people should that situation arise. 

Idea's 

Ice-breaker questions:-

  • Ask them to tell everyone about their experience with sugarcraft so far

  • What has brought them to your session

  • Do they know much about the industry

  • Tell them your story and journey through sugarcrafting 

  • Are they a business or are they just doing this for fun

  • Ask silly questions - who was your teenage pinup

  • talk through and show them the projects they can make and what they will learn at the online classes

Demos / Topics

  • Get them to show you what they've made at their classes and discuss what they found challenging 

  • Demo that ....

  • You could go through some of the basic tools as a starting point, they could join in if they have tools and paste

  • talk about what tools, materials and equipment they will need for the classes they have signed up to., make sure they've ordered the items they may need.

  • If they are novices and using supermarket paste get them to add cmc in if they've not been doing this, and to see what difference it makes, you could talk about the different modelling pastes, but show them the paste and cmc option first, they could then later use modelling paste and see the difference.

    • my thoughts here are that if they are starting from scratch, it can be daunting, so keeping things simple is the best way to start​

  • Different paste types and what they are used for

  • Food colourings / gels 

  • Glitter !!! 

  • Making sure what they use is edible 

  • Using cutters / tappits / moulds / veiners

  • Practice making the basic shapes for modelling

  • Practice rolling paste thinly

  • Lettering on cakes

  • Putting flowers on cakes - being aware of poisonous flowers - posy picks

  • Tell a story about a cake failure or a lesson learnt the hard way

As we progress I will put monthly idea's in the staffroom 

Hints and Tips

When setting your camera or device up to chat to the group make sure you are framed well in the picture so that they can see the top half of you, they don't really want to see up your nose, or as a friend calls it Mr Potato Head - Place your head and face in the top half of the frame, without too much space above your head. You might need to use a phone holder or place your laptop on on some boxes or books, but it is worth it to give a more professional feel to your meetings.  You can always ask in the staffroom or me to check it out with you and give you some pointers.

Mrs Potato Head

Up Yur Nose

Better

Best

Keep an eye on your students, watch for those not being able to get the chance to speak and invite them to do that, ask them what they think, or a direct question.  Some may just be happy to sit and listen, but if the dynamics of the group mean you have one person who talks a lot, make sure you pass the question over to another member at a natural break in the conversation. 

Other than that, enjoy yourself, get to know your students, remember to encourage them to sign up to classes.  If they want to do an online class with you, that is fine, encourage them to do this - but we will still add that class to the time-table and mark it as 'sold out'   

Rhu is passionate about her teachers, supporting and enabling them to build their own network of students. Most students are new to Sugarcraft and are cheered on as they pursue their own journeys in this exciting and diverse community, forming lifelong friendships that involve more than just the regular meetings.

 

Cake Minds aims to build a global network of teachers that offer new skills by bringing together the Sugarcraft community from a virtual platform to a local supportive community near you. Support and advice is offered in a mindful and creative space on a regular basis in small, friendly, informal settings.

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rhu.strand@hotmail.co.uk   All Rights Reserved

Established in 2009