Lingnan University Orientation Bookbinding Workshop

2018-09-11
I was invited by Lingnan University to instruct a bookbinding workshop during orientation week. Lingnan University is a liberal arts university in Hong Kong, they are affiliated with my alma mater Carleton College. I have previously taught at Hong Kong University and also at PolyU HKCC, even though with teaching experience at other tertiary institutions, this workshop was a bit challenging due to the large class size and the time limitation.
There were 29 students in total, we were expecting 30 students. With craft classes, there is always a disproportion between male and female ratio, for this class I was pleasantly surprised that there were more male students than I anticipated. I started off explaining what I do and also showed them different types of books. I wanted to expose them to the idea that books come in all sorts of different formats and to help them think out of the box about what is considered a book.
I taught them how to make a 2 signature pamphlet binding. The challenge was to demonstrate it in front of the classroom and have them know what to pay attention to and also since it was a big class there were students sitting at the back that couldn't really see the what was going on. I think for setting up large classes like this one, next time I would like the students to be arranged to sit around me instead of in front of me, this would allow for the students to be able to see the instructions better.
After I gave the demonstration they got their materials and went on to binding their books. Most of the students needed help along the way and we had a bit of a space issue as the tables were rather small. You can see from the picture above that the students are hard at work binding their books.
We ran over time for this class but all the students managed to leave with a book that they made. There were some students that had more trouble understanding the structure and the sewing process, but even so they managed to make a book that they can use and treasure. I hope to be able to do more classes like this, I find it really rewarding when students make their books and are happy with what they made.
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