Teaching a teen class

 I wanted to comment that teens have the same capabilities as

How right you are! They may lack experience, skill and patience,
but that’s part of being a beginner. If the group is 14 to 19
years old, they can be introduced to most basic metalsmithing
techniques as long as they learn how to use the tools safely
and correctly and clean up after themselves. (Good work habits)
A fun project for beginners on a torch is fusing pieces of
silver scrap into an attractive shape that can be used as a
pendant or ,if small enough, a ring if soldered to a shank.

Hi all, I am heading West to home and am overnight in Phoenix,
catching up on e-mail. the mention of the instructions in Danish
caught my eye. I recently purchased a new book on Wire and
Chains that is translated from Danish and is only $15.00. I have
it at home and will post the accurate title when I get there. It
is a Dover Book and the Spool Chain that was mentioned in
another post is done in this book without the spool, which has
constantly thwarted me. I cannot get the under wire to go over
the upper one. I know this book will be of value to anyone
working with children. I ordered it online from Powell’s.


Hi Joy,

Re: Your question about teaching teens jewelry. Your ideas
sound really ambitious. I also teach jewelry to kids (2nd - 6th
grade) and art to kids and adults. Across the board, most kids
love learning to bead, and love making hemp jewelry with beads.
If you have a kiln, or access to one, it’s neat to have kids
make their own beads with a low-fire earthenware clay, fired at
cone 04 (bisque) and 06 (glaze). The beads can be threaded onto
nichrome wire (available in most jewelry supply and ceramic
catalogues) and fired. Some of the special effects Amoco
glazes, like Fu Manchu and Oasis, e.g., fire great beads. Fimo
is also terrific to work with, and doesn’t have to be fired.
Hope this helps. I’d love to hear how the course goes and where
you teach. I’m presently teaching in central N.J. Good luck!
-Madeline, Arts Umbrella School

There’s also “broom casting.” Good use for leftover silver
pieces or stuff you want to melt down and recast. I posted some
instructions on this a while back; (under bean casting); if you
are interested and can’t find it or want further info contact me
off list . Margaret @Margaret_Malm

Having started in the jewelry biz at the age of seven and
selling to three stores at 10yrs old with my mother carting my
sister and myself to all the craft fairs in the local area to
sell our wares I think that I could tell you that teens can do
quite well with metalsmithing. I started with wire/beads and took
a basic silversmithing class at 17 to increase my designs and
profits by using precious metals. In sixth grade I remember
teaching other children how to make jewelry so I could sell them
supplies. Teach them the basic skills and the ones who will want
to learn more will let you know. Kudos to Karen and her
Metalwerxs Studio.