Our 2-Day Introduction to Dry Stone Walling often runs simultaneously with a 2-Day Cheek Rebuild workshop. Both happen in the same place on the same wall(s). People new to building a double-face, freestanding dry stone wall build the middle section. People who have already learned the basics sign up to learn how to complete the wall with a structurally sound vertical wall end. They apply the same five basic rules in a slightly different context.
Most of the eleven men who came to the Stone Trust Center for our late September workshop came because the land they live on throws up lots of stone. Many have walls to rebuild. Several arrived with professional experience–in landscaping, carpentry, construction, engineering, and sculpture–that allowed them to easily connect their knowledge to the techniques for building that prevent gravity and friction from taking the wall down too soon. Stone Trust board member Duncan Murphy was among the attendees who came for professional reasons. He owns a landscaping business in New Hampshire and wants to add dry stone to his product portfolio.
Jake, too, came to add to his dry stone product list. Having earned his Level 1 Initial certification in March, he returned to build his skills at an August 2-Day Intro. This time he came to build a cheek end. By the end of October, Jake intends to incorporate a dry stone skill set that includes freestanding walls, stone shaping, flagging, and steps and stairs into his repertoire. He is an aspiring mason and Master gardener and a recent Stone Trust professional member whose Stone Trust web page is in process. We’ll let you know when you can reach him there.
Instructors Ron Neil and Dario Coletta shared the lead instructor role, with Pete Ryder as Instructional Mentor. The Stone Trust is creating an instructor development plan to ensure that we can offer all the people who want to learn dry stone walling not only professional walling expertise, but professional instruction. We’re focusing on building the pool of wallers who can take the instructional lead. As with a classroom teacher, certified Stone Trust instructors must negotiate workshop management, curriculum and instruction, evaluation, merchandise and membership sales, almost entirely in the public eye. It’s a big task and we’re training for it!
Reviews were positive. Participants appreciated the one-to-one engagement with very knowledgeable teachers. They enjoyed learning a bit about shaping stone. They appreciated the opportunity to practice and to get pro tips. Thanks to participants and instructors for their enthusiasm and patience with our instructor training process. We’ll be sure that your feedback gets put to good effect.