Instructor Handbook

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Getting Started

Thank you and welcome new Instructors! The first step to getting starting is to arrange a meeting with Artisan's Education Director to review your class proposal and/or course outline. To arrange a meeting, please email If you have not been to Artisan's Asylum before, we encourage you to come take a public tour to see our space ahead of time.

If you have other questions prior to your first meeting, please check out our FAQ section here:

HIRING PAPERWORK: Contract Enrollment Information

Once you've submitted your course outline and met with the Education Director, your next step is to complete our hiring paperwork. All Instructors are hired on as 1099 contract workers. You will be paid semi-monthly, upon completion of your class.

  • Step 1: Sign our Instructor Agreement online
  • Step 2: Complete W-9 Tax Form - fill out first page and return to us
  • Step 3: Submit a Direct Deposit Enrollment Form and either a voided check or your bank can supply a Direct Deposit Approval Form.
    • Complete Payroll Solutions administers our payroll. You will be emailed instructions to create a login to a self service portal through which you will be able to view your own payment details. You will be able to view your paystubs online.
    • You may email or drop off your completed forms directly the Education Director or you can mail them to: Education Department, Artisan's Asylum, 10 Tyler Street, Somerville, MA 02143.
  • Step 4: Education updates and calls for upcoming class dates will come in the Instructors Announce mailing list. To receive these emails, send a blank email to to subscribe.

Materials Policy

  • Instructors are expected to purchase materials for classes unless instructing students to bring a few items of their choice.
  • Students will reimburse you on the first (or only) day of the class.
  • Please be sure to check your class fee and the materials fee to make sure classes are listed correctly
  • If a student forgets to bring cash/check to class for the fee, please complete the following form to receive help from the Education Department in resolving a non-payment Materials Fee Missing/Unpaid

Submitting Classes for On-site & Online

All classes must be submitted to the Education Director before the start of each term. These deadlines will be shared with you in your first meeting and subsequent deadlines will be shared via the Instructors Announce mailing list.

  • To submit a new class and propose meeting dates, submit via the following forms:
  • Submit a form for each class you're prepared to teach. This description will be included on our website, so be sure to think about the following when writing your description and proposing dates.
    • 1. Who is your audience? What age group? What types of students should come to this class?
    • 2. What problem is your class solving for them?
    • 3. How will taking this class help them to solve their problem? What will they accomplish by taking this class?
    • 4. When do you think they'll want to take this class? How long do they need to learn the information?
  • Want to submit a class specifically for a private session? Email the Education Director with this information to include on our website.

Club Automation


All tickets for classes are purchased via our partner platform, Club Automation. You will be able to use this platform to log in and view your classes, rosters and be able to communicate with students.

  • If you are already a member, you will need a separate account to view the Instructor portal. Please contact the Education Director to let them know your current account username. The Instructor portal will require a different email address, or an extension to your current email address. We can help arrange this and a quick training on how to access the portal.
  • If you are not a member, an account will be set up for you. Once you receive an email asking you to setup your password, please go ahead and create one so you can log in and review your roster.

Using Club Automation to track your registration

To view your class registration, use the following steps:

  • Log into your account by going to our homepage and selecting MEMBERS > New Login or by going to here
  • From the Events tab, select from the two dropdowns
    • Dropdown 1: Facility
    • Dropdown 2: The term of the class (i.e. Spring 2019)
  • In the large box labeled "Programs", find your class, select the Session and the Date, Time and Location.
    • Online classes will begin with "Online"; Tool Training classes will begin with "Tool Training"
  • From that page you'll see on the bottom right in blue several options. Select "Attendance" to view your roster.
  • Before the start of your class, email all students by selecting the Email Icon above the roster. For online classes, you will need to provide the Zoom link to your students at least 8hr before the start of the class.
    • Currently the student's phone numbers are listed should an emergency occur and you're unable to hold your class. In all emergency cases, please contact both the Front Desk and the Education Director before attempting to reach students.

While the Education Department will be keeping track of registration, it is helpful if you can communicate with us a few days before your class if you feel the enrollment numbers are low. We can take steps to try to boost enrollment and/or reschedule the class to try to encourage more students to register.

Online Classes

If you are teaching an online class, be sure to send all links, attachments and information to students well in advance of the start of the class. We recommend at least 8hr before, but one day is best. Make sure to check all your digital tech before starting your class to ensure you are able to begin your class on time.

  • Before your class, make sure you have the Zoom/YouTube link ready and that it is correct. The Education Director will send you a Zoom link, unless otherwise specified
  • If you need more than one camera, test each to make sure they are working and compatible with your equipment

Registration, Withdrawal and Transfer Policies

Artisan's Asylum has a Registration Policy posted for students. Students may not withdraw from classes within 24-hours of a class, and may only withdraw with a penalty up to 72-hours prior to the start of a class.

Private Lesson Reporting

Once you have been hired on and run a class, the Education Director may email you separately for requests for private instruction. You will be responsible for arranging the date, time and location with a student, as well as communicating your shop rate for the lesson.

  • Once you've arranged your private lesson, please email the Education Director with the date, time, shop, and the registration fee. Please allow 24 - 48 hrs for your request to be processed.
  • The Education Director will input this information into Club Automation and bill the student directly.
  • For private lessons Instructors will be paid 75% of total amount (%25 to Asylum) of class via payroll the week following the lesson. Materials should be separate and requested directly from the student.
  • If a student approaches you directly about scheduling a private class, fill out A2 Instructor Private Lesson Report for the Education Director to bill the student.
  • A2 suggests a one-hour minimum for all private lessons.
  • Encourage students to complete their Registration prior to requesting a private lesson. This Registration is also the waiver!
  • Please meet your student at the Front Desk as default, if other arrangements are necessary, please communicate with (front-desk@) so they can direct the student.

Additional Instructor Information

  • Before your class, make sure to book any tools or resources you need ahead of time so that they are available for your use. You can book this via our system Tools & Resources Reservation System
  • Insurance
    • Individuals acting on behalf of Artisan's Asylum as instructors are covered by our General Liability insurance. (Limited to natural born persons - i.e. people but not corporate entities.)
    • If you'd like to receive payment for your teaching as part of your business entity, you are expected to provide their own insurance, and name Artisan's Asylum as an additionally insured.
  • You can use this Class Ticket Split worksheet to figure out how your class profit shares with the Asylum will work out for your ticket pricing.

Expectations of Instructors

Here's what we expect of our instructors:

  • You are an ambassador for Artisan's Asylum. This may be the first time seeing Artisan's and discovering the opportunities here. Share your passion and enthusiasm about your curriculum and about the organization's mission to instruct in the nexus of engineering, arts and technology.
  • Once you have been hired by Education Program Director, please be sure to sign up to the Instructors-Announce@ list to receive updates about classes, schedules and other information regarding Artisan's and the Education Department.
  • You will gain access to our ticketing system, Club Automation, and have the ability to check your roster at any time. Please monitor your attendance for meeting class minimums. The Education Directorwill reach out 1 day prior to your class to check with you if the class attendance is low to see if you'll consider running it. Otherwise, if the class if full we expect the class to run as scheduled. All cancellations are manually processed by the Education Director.
  • Course descriptions are requested for each term 6-8 weeks prior to the start of the term. Please plan which classes you'd like to teach during each and propose any new classes via the Jotform (which you'll be given access to upon hiring)
  • Double-check that the course descriptions we publish are accurate: check the links on the website. Email teach@ with any issues.
  • Be prepared to teach to a wide range of ability and skill levels. If the class has prerequisites, make sure we know them and that they are in the class description.
  • Teach by example: Don't weld while wearing shorts and sunglasses, treat the tools well, clean up your messes, etc.
  • Tell us what skills will your students need to have before they enroll
  • Figure out how much time you need; be realistic in planning what the class will cover in each session - it is better to over-estimate than under (students may have questions after class, etc.)
  • Manage time during classes
  • Help sell the class; see below.
  • If an emergency comes up and you will not be able to teach a class session, please contact us as soon as possible at AND our Front Desk at (617) 284-6878. Please also contact your students by email/phone in Club Automation.

Shop Safety & Etiquette

See Shop Safety and Etiquette

Promoting Classes

The Asylum promotes via social media and through our community connections. However, an individual instructor's promotion helps communities you're connected with to see the classes you're offering and often attend because they know/have heard of you!

If you'd like to help with your class promotion, here are some ideas on how to reach out:

  • Share our Facebook event of your class with your social networks.
  • Send photos, videos or content ideas to for social media posts about your class or projects.
  • Ask individual people if they'd be interested in your class in a one-on-one setting (whether by email or face-to-face). We're all pretty immune to advertisements these days, but simultaneously always looking for stuff to do - if you can get someone's attention and talk yourself up, you might just have yourself a student! Alternatively, if they themselves are not interested, ask if they know anyone who might be.
  • Post online to anyplace that you think is appropriate and would not harm our reputation; please don't make us look like spammers; check to see if anyone else has posted about us recently, and make sure commercial (but not-for-profit) postings are acceptable. Look for online forums or groups that do things similar to what you're proposing, and approach them and see if their members might be interested. For instance, a perfect group for our Forming Sheetmetal class might be LARPers who want to make their own armor.
  • In the past - We had fliers for a class that you could download, print, and hand out or post. You're welcome to use these as a model and make your own class-specific flyers. If you have examples of class Flyers you've used in the past you'd like to share here, please do! Check Flyers for Historical reference of a set of fliers. These fliers were designed to be used as handouts - each is 1/4 of a sheet of paper - rather than big posters.
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