Teaching a teen class

Joy One project that seems to work well with teens is bangle
bracelets. Simply measure out 16 to 18 inches of 16 gauge round
brass, copper or silver wire, fold in half and place one end in a
bench vise. Hold the other end of the wire with a small vise grip
pliers, keeping the wire straight, start twisting the wire to the
right and a pattern will develop. Stop twisting when you’re happy
with the pattern, be careful not to twist too tightly or wire may
snap, annealing before twisting may prevent this, however, over
zealous students may snap it anyway. Remove twisted wire from
bench vise and pliers, bend around bracelet mandrel, cut and
file ends so that ends meet cleanly and solder. Place back on
mandrel and hammer round, then polish. You can also experiment by
twisting various shape wire together for interesting patterns,
ie; round and square wire . Also, you can made a matching ring
using the same technique, but with a finer gauge wire. I hope
this is helpful. Robert Streppone, Director Studio Jewelers, Ltd.
(Jewelry School) http://www.studiojewelersltd.com

A GREAT BIG THANK YOU to all of you and your wonderful ideas!
Our Art Association has one of the best jewelry workshops in
Central Illinois, including complete casting (centrif. and vac.)
large soldering area, 4 flex shafts, complete polishing system,
8 work benches, even rolling mill and vib. tumbler with steel
shot. So I am set. I have taught adult classes for 7 years but
this will really be fun (adults seem to stifle themselves seeing
only what is on the market today). Following are the ideas I
will go with:

  1. fused piece - using all the scrap I have accumulated

  2. Bean, sand, cuttlebone, water or salt casting (better than
    teaching them wax work which is real difficult to master in 7

  3. copper bracelet (twisted, pounded or textured) (my husband
    was an electrician, lots of copper wire)

  4. 1 organic casting (include the fun plastic thumb print, neat

  5. Simple ring with bezel set stone

I think the creative minds of teens will make this a blast!
Maybe I can scan a few pieces and leave them on the Internet
when the summer is done. I’ll let everyone know.

Joy in Illinois