TOPICS COVERED IN EACH WORKSHOP:
Hands On Construction Topics
The seven day comprehensive workshop is designed to teach participants everything they need to know to build their own straw bale structure. We work with structures that enable the participants to learn, hands on, about many facets of straw bale construction. Specific topics covered in the construction of the structures are:
– Toe Up Installation
– Bale Stacking
– Bale Re-Tying and Alteration
– Window and Door Installation
– Box Beam Construction and Installation
– Framing Considerations
– Electrical Work as Required
– Plumbing Installations as Required
– Hanging Cabinets
– Tying in Interior Partition Walls
– Shaping Bales and Corners
– Creating Niches
– Wire Mesh
– Plaster Prep Work
– Natural Plastering
– Lectures and Q&A Sessions
The above list represents the basics of what is covered during the hands on phase of the workshop. These topics are also discussed in depth with “on the spot” lectures and question and answer sessions. Your questions on these topics or any other related topics are welcome and encouraged. The discussions are often full of rich information exchanges. Specific topics covered in the lectures are typically inspired by the work taking place on the building; however, additional topics are often raised as well which include:
– Design Criteria
– Engineering Options
– Foundation Options
– Running a Job Site Efficiently
– Scheduling Sub Contractors
– Acting as the General Contractor
– Complete Owner Builder Techniques
– Straw Bale Construction Details
– Plastering Techniques and Materials
– Green Building Materials
– Other Aspects of Green Construction in Your Home
Again, questions are encouraged and open discussions often spring forth with valuable information for all.
The days are full and long. We work hard on the job site in the morning and then break for a leisurely lunch. Our afternoons continue the hard work of the morning. Our dinner and evening break is full of fun and play. I encourage people to bring instruments and their willingness to play together. Although physical work is involved in building the structure, participants are encouraged to work at their own pace. You know your limits and those limits are respected. Our goal is to get as far as possible in the construction of the building. In most cases, we will not get beyond the scratch (first) coat of plaster.
Three hearty meals a day are provided as part of the tuition. The meals are delicious and filling. Workshop participants always seem amazed at the great food prepared by the hosts and make a point of thanking the kitchen crew for a wonderful week!
Camping is available on site for free and bathroom facilities are provided. A shower is available; however, the amount of hot water may be limited and the number of participants is high. We ask that showers be kept to a minimum in both duration and frequency. Some workshop locations may have other accommodations available such as bed and breakfast rooms, cabins, or tipis. Those accommodations are issued on a first come first served basis and may or may not cost extra based on the workshop host/site.
More Than Just Building With Bales
I focus on education in regards to all aspects of the home construction process. My education does not stop at straw bale construction. We discuss other aspects of the home that can be built Green. Flooring, cabinets, construction adhesives, and other items all play a part in the health of the home. Most importantly, we have fun while we explore the concepts of green construction. After all, for me, building without fun is like living without breathing. I love what I do and that is what makes the difference. In fact, I often get the feedback that the friendships created during the week are a huge part of the success of the workshop.
Using Earth (cob, rammed, adobe,+)
Teachers, Educators And Tutors Of The Online Course:
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