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Sarah Jane Whittaker

Sarah Jane Whittaker
Eastbourne, East Sussex

Background Information

Years Teaching: 10+
Years Teaching Clay: 1
Years Working w/Clay: 3
School or Studio:  Sussex Jewellery School
Freelance:  Yes
Specialties:  Well-known for my patient and supportive teaching style, I enjoy teaching beginners a range of essential basic techniques to get them started with polymer clay jewellery-making.
First Experience With Clay:  Honestly? With silver clay prices rising, I turned to polymer in order to work on a grander scale. I discovered soooo much more: delicious hues, interesting surface finishes, easy image transfer techniques and sculptural jewellery possibilities with translucent polymer to mimic the glass and pebbles I find on the beach at the end of my road. I love polymer!
Past Teaching Experiences:  The nu-Bakelite range of aqua brooches (with hand-drawn seagull images) I designed last year for the Brighton Festival drove me to distraction, and nearly had me hurling my pasta machine out of the window, until I cracked the technique for avoiding opaque areas in my translucent Pardo clay.
Publication Experience:  I've written for Making Jewellery magazine and the journal for the Association of Contemporary Jewellers, Findings.
Teaching Level:  Professional

Lesson Information

Private Lessons:  Yes
How Far Will Travel: Negotiable
Reimbursed Expenses: Travel, parking , accommodation
Group Lessons:  Yes
Minimum Number of Students: 3
Maximum Number of Students:  7
How Far Will Travel: Negotiable
Reimbursed Expenses: Travel, parking , accommodation

Class Prep Time:  I prepare for classes in my own time: with a background in non-jewellery teaching, I write learning outcomes, materials sheets and supply course handouts.
Maximum Consecutive Days Teaching: 1
Class Listings & Descriptions: Beginners' (Level 1) Polymer Clay: all the basics to get students started, including conditioning, mixing colours, Skinner blends, basic canework, forming beads by hand and with bead rollers, making custom polymer tools, texturing, curing, sanding, finishing.

Words of Encouragement to Novice Teachers:

"You will never know it all - there's always more to learn and discover about this exciting and wonderful material. Prepare well, incorporate different teaching methods to assist students with differing learning styles, always have your students' best interests at heart, and be ready to learn from your students, as they learn from you."

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