School is Cool

2024 Scholarships are now closed. Please check back later for opportunities in 2025! 

A Four-Week Program for Aspiring Educators

Level: All Skill Levels

Dates: Aug 12 - Sept 6, 2024

Teaching the craft of forging is a growing interest and incredibly important for preservation of the craft and the quality of the skills future generations will possess.  It is our duty to know the information well, not just the “how” but also the “why” we do things, and to be able to clearly convey these techniques and ideas to individuals interested in keeping this craft alive. Teaching is a skill set in and of itself with a lot more to it than being skilled at one's craft. Characteristics that make a good instructor that are necessary and complimentary to being a good blacksmith are preparation, professionalism, organization, scheduling, pace, information delivery, coherence, clarity, writing, photography and more. This workshop places emphasis and focus on all the aspects that make a workshop strong from preparation and planning to demo execution troubleshooting and helping students.


During this educational intensive, students will be challenged to develop a 2 - 3 day hands-on forging workshop based on their interest and what they value about the craft.  Ample time will be allotted to research a few ideas and shop time to work through all the technical aspects of the subject of your class will be given with help available from the CMA instructors.  Once the students have worked through their project each one will be given the opportunity to teach their class to the other students through a series of mini three day workshops hosted by each student.  This allows everyone the opportunity to work through their ideas and plan to a group of willing non judgmental students and constructive criticism will follow each mini workshop with feedback provided by fellow students and CMA instructors about the strengths and weaknesses of their workshop.

Students will be expected to present their ideas to the group, write course descriptions, discuss why they think it's important and valuable as a learning exercise and open conversations about workshop development can be expected daily.  One can expect to be challenged not only to develop a strong workshop but also to look within themselves as a crafts person and try to figure out what it is about the craft that they are drawn to and how this may relate to a teaching philosophy.   

The mission of this program is to give aspiring instructors the time, resources, and a comfortable space to conduct research about a workshop they want to teach and an opportunity to practice teaching it in front of other students and instructors.  This experience can give one the confidence to accept invitations or approach shops that focus on education with a solid well prepared idea for a workshop that will be beneficial to any student who participates and reflect well on themselves and the facility at which their teaching. It's my opinion that research and preparation are paramount when it comes to quality education. Having dedicated time and space to work through educational ideas and practice them with like minded smiths can pave the way for a strong educational career.

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Scholarships supported by the Windgate Foundation

Applications Available: November 21, 2023  | Due: February 16, 2024

Apply for School Is Cool

Join our 4-week program for aspiring educators in the craft of forging


Patrick J. Quinn headshot

Patrick Quinn

With a passion for sculpture and education Patrick uses forging as a vehicle to express himself sculptural and uses toolmaking and teaching as a way to share what he find so intrinsic about metalworking with his students.  With a firm belief in “quality work starts with quality tooling,” Pat uses this philosophy to forge the…

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