What Would You Include In A Class?

Decorating By Kate714 Updated 27 Nov 2008 , 1:24am by annacakes

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Kate714 Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 1:51am
post #1 of 22

Hi all,

I have been approved to teach a cake decorating class through my town's parks and rec department icon_surprised.gif I had the option of two, 3-hour classes or two, 2-hour classes. I'm going to go with the 2-hour class, for a total of four hours. I have lots of ideas on what I want to do, starting with the basics like torting, filling and icing the cake smooth, then moving on to more fun stuff.

I'm looking for suggestions on what you would include in the 4 hours, to give the novice decorator some practical things they could then use at home??


21 replies
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kakeladi Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 2:28am
post #2 of 22

Stars,dots, zigzag are basics that can be used for decorations &/or borders. Swirl flowers. apple blossoms (easier than roses!); piped tulips. If you have (or can get at the library) Wilton's Encyclopedia Vol 3 has some great, easy pipe right on the cake flowers.
How to spread icing thru a stencil.
Simple figure piping of just a couple of animals - chicks, bunnies, it will be spring by the time they get to themicon_smile.gif

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CakeMommyTX Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 2:39am
post #3 of 22

Hot guys in nothing but aprons thumbs_up.gif

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Kate714 Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 2:59am
post #4 of 22

hmmm...okay! icon_biggrin.gif anyone else have ideas??

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gateauxdamour Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 3:16am
post #5 of 22

kakeladi summed things up nicely!

I would just add the possibility of shell borders. They're pretty standard/simple and the students will have a star tip already!

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bobwonderbuns Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 3:16am
post #6 of 22

I teach a basic buttercream class that is six weeks long, one night per week for three hours for six weeks. In it we have four weeks of hands on learning -- cut, fill, crumb coat and ice the cake. Then we move onto open star and round tip techniques, and finally roses, rosebuds and leaves. The last night they bring their own cake and do it up! You're welcome to modify any of that to suit your needs. Hope that helps!! icon_biggrin.gif

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Kate714 Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 2:37pm
post #7 of 22

thanks everyone! bob, on the weeks before their last week, are they just practicing borders and stuff on the Wilton board thing? I'm just wondering because since I only have two days of class I wonder if I should them bring cake both days or just the last day.

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bobwonderbuns Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 9:16pm
post #8 of 22

In my class I give them the option of bringing a cake the 5th class to practice on and learn icing a cake smoothly. They don't have to but many do because they like the practice. The last week they do bring a cake and they are on their own (with me hovering around to help if they need it.) icon_biggrin.gif

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bobwonderbuns Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 9:17pm
post #9 of 22

Oh and weeks 2, 3 and 4 they bring the practice icing and just practice on the tables (practice boards are too small anyway.)

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jjandhope Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 9:51pm
post #10 of 22

As a beginner, my main concern was (is) how to get that "hatbox" look...straight sides and smooth flat top. You can do all kinds of fancy piping but if you dont start with a great shape it will look like someone sat on it before you decorated it. I think this makes more of a difference than anything and it will speak well of you to other people when these beginners show off their cakes to their families.

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cylstrial Posted 20 Nov 2008 , 11:18pm
post #11 of 22

I'm also teaching a beginning cake class. So this is a perfect thread for me. There have been some really good idea's on here. Thanks for starting this thread and thanks to those of you who have answered the question.

Personally, I was just planning to use the Wilton Course 1 booklet and just go from there. I was wondering if I should have them bring a cake the first night?


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Kate714 Posted 21 Nov 2008 , 1:10am
post #12 of 22

thanks, guys! cylstrial, I was also going to look at Wilton course 1, but I think I may also incorporate a little "tools and tricks" lesson, like using "gadgets" such as impression mats for the sides, rubber stamps for imprints, molded chocolate, etc...

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cakedout Posted 21 Nov 2008 , 4:07am
post #13 of 22

2 2-hour classes isn't very long to teach, in my opinion. Call the class a "mini-class". Do start with the demo on how to cover a cake board and how to ice a cake, but quickly move on to the basics as stated in the other posts. The time goes very quickly, so keep an eye on the clock!

Have the students pre-register, if possible and send them a supply list. You can have them bring icing to class, or better yet-make it in class and give some to each student (so you KNOW it will be the correct consistency!)

Just recently I did a 2 day flower mini class (2days, 2 hours each) and we could barely get thru what I had planned. A full-blown beginner class should really run for at least 4-5 weeks. I will gladly e-mail you my course outlines and class supply list info, if you are interested. I teach independently, but roughly follow the Wilton outline with some adjustments (and omissions of any of their "fluff" that doesn't have anything to do with teaching basic skills! icon_wink.gif )

As posted by another cc'er, i only have students bring a cake to their last class because I believe there needs to be more time spent teaching and students practicing in class rather than taking precious time to decorate a cake or cupcakes.

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JanetBme Posted 21 Nov 2008 , 3:02pm
post #14 of 22

Just adding that I agree on the basic torting/icing and smoothing--- have plans to go on a lot further- but be prepared to take twice as long learning to smooth the cake and make it even. There will be one or two in the class that just can't do it...

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ahuvas Posted 25 Nov 2008 , 9:09pm
post #15 of 22

I also agree - not that I am so great but I am self taught and the one thing that I am having trouble with is torting, icing smooth buttercream and so on because I have never seen it done (except on you tube). They can know all the decorations in the world but if they don't get this right their cakes will always look immature.

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__Jamie__ Posted 25 Nov 2008 , 9:36pm
post #16 of 22

Oh nice one ahuvas. Presentation! A beautifully decorated cake will not look as nice sitting on a plain old plate or uncovered cardboard circle.

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Narie Posted 25 Nov 2008 , 11:35pm
post #17 of 22

2 2 hour classes isn't much time at all. Out of that time you will have to figure 10 minutes for people to get settled each session. I would make my plans very limited. I would be tempted to do a one layer torted cake with simple shell border, corelli lace, drop flowers, a bit of vining and some leaves.

Show them what they are going to learn- teach while you do the cake in front of them. Give them information on choosing pans and preparing thepan; baking the cake and leveling it as well as torting. Frosting recipe, coloring -why the stuff in grocery store isn't a good idea. If you can, include hands on with a decorating bag and some frosting that you provide- if you have enough colored frosting in your bags. Each student could practice making a few drop flowers, a bit of cornelli lace, leaves and a shell border on waxed paper.

The second class should have them working on their own cake and frosting - you will need to move around helping them and drawing their attention to one person if everyone is having the same problem. Have bandaids along with you, some yutz will slice their hand leveling or torting, ( Yes, I was theyutz.)

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tonedna Posted 25 Nov 2008 , 11:39pm
post #18 of 22
Originally Posted by yourstrulytx

Hot guys in nothing but aprons thumbs_up.gif

Ok...I am going to this class icon_razz.gif
Edna icon_biggrin.gif

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tonedna Posted 25 Nov 2008 , 11:46pm
post #19 of 22

I give 2 hours of class. and basically for first timers all you have time to do is basic torte and filling.Then crumbcoat and second coat. Maybe you can add details on stars shell or reverse shells.
Edna icon_biggrin.gif

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JenniferMI Posted 27 Nov 2008 , 12:49am
post #20 of 22

Edna -

I'll be there, too! LOL!

Yes, a two hr. class is NOT much time at all. Keep it very simple.

Jen icon_smile.gif

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MAGGISMITH Posted 27 Nov 2008 , 1:19am
post #21 of 22

I used to teach a 2hr. class and for the first class I would make a small shaped cake for each student (snowman, bunny, teddy, whatever was appropriate for the season). I would teach them how to fill and ice a round cake (that I brought) and have them bring in an iced cake for the second class. The rest of the first class I would teach them the star fill in method on the little cakes so they had something to bring home and start on some shell and rope borders. The second class I taught rosettes and ruffles, sweet peas and rose buds. Also, some piped flowers to decorate their cakes and of course, writing on the cake. HTH

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annacakes Posted 27 Nov 2008 , 1:24am
post #22 of 22

Hi! Have been teaching for 5 years and agree that levelling, torting, filling and icing smooth are very important. (Some come to class just for that. ) This really only takes 15-20 minutes (or even less) and is invaluable to them. Make enough icing to do the cake and to supply them. /Then start right in decorating with them. You can cover at least one tip first night.

Pre-register them and give a supply list of four basic tips - #'s 3 (dots, printing, writing, outlining, vines) #16 or 21 (zig-zag border, shell border, rosettes & star fill-in, star border) #352 for leaves, #2D so they can actually DO a flower.

Second night do the other 3 tips. this gives lots of practice time.

and happy teaching.

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