Not Just for Grownups!

Thousands of Bay Area youth ages 8 and older have attended Crucible classes, camps, workshops and events. From welding to jewelry and glass (and much more) we provide a unique setting for youth to explore their creative voices while absorbing real-life lessons in science, technology, engineering and math.

Ages 8 to 11

Clay Critters

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In this exciting, fun class we will explore clay as a sculptural material to create critters from our own imaginations using hand-building techniques (slabs, coils, etc.), mold making with plaster, and different surface treatments, including traditional glazes and non-traditional approaches. We will also incorporate other materials such as fabrics, metal, and wood into our critters.

Chibi: Miniature Figurines

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Learn the basics of preparing, shaping, sculpting, cane making and baking polymer clay. Students will use their own brightly polymer colored clay to make small sculptures known as Chibis and incorporate them into wearable objects. They will leave this class with small memorable objects and wearing their self-made accessories with pride!

Adornment in Feathers

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An adornment is anything that enhances it’s wearers beauty or makes them appear more interesting.  In this class you will create adornments for both the head and neck using feathers and a variety of interesting textiles, wood, metal, beads and inspired findings.  You will learn to trim, shape, layer, compose and manipulate feathers into arresting and unique wearable art.  You will learn simple sewing and jewelry-making skills to support your creative vision.  Draw inspiration from tribal, bohemian or haute couture sources and adorn yourself!

Cartoneria (Mexican Paper Sculpture)

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In this class you’ll learn cartoneria, the ancient and popular art form of Mexican paper-mâché. Cartoneria combines Aztec styles with Spanish techniques and is deeply rooted in ancient Mexican legends, traditions and craftsmanship. In this course you will create fantastic and colorful sculptures from paper and recycled materials, using mythological beasts and characters as a starting point.

Paperpalooza

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In this exciting, playful class, youth will learn a new art technique every day of the week! Students will design and create one-of-a-kind, colorful block prints, make beautifully marbled paper with a unique, non-toxic, and fun method, discover the excitement of resists, explore the shimmer of embossing, and more. At the end of the course, students will have plenty of beautiful creations featuring swirls and kaleidoscopes of colors to display!

Extreme Gizmos

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Learn kinetic techniques to design, engineer and construct a mechanical sculpture, contraption or gadget with lights and moving parts. Using new and salvaged components, you will learn how motors, lights and switches work, how to create mechanical structures, how to create different types of motion and how to incorporate switches to operate your very own fantastical contraption!

Woodcarving & Sculpting

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This class introduces basic hand tools and their functions through hands-on demonstrations. Students will learn about the history, cultural significance, and process of woodcarving and sculpting, including design and carving approaches. Students are given expert guidance through every step of the carving process, from brainstorming to adding fine detail, and will create a three-dimensional project of their own design inspired culture, myth, folklore or their own imaginations.

Gravity Cars

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Gravity Cars is a no-rules miniature car-building and racing competition inspired by the Nerdy Derby. Like the Nerdy Derby we will have a large, undulating track and no restrictions on the size of the cars or materials which can be used. Gravity Cars reward creativity, cleverness and ingenuity.

Rags to Stitches

Students will begin to learn about the creative process of fashion while understanding how recycled clothing helps to keep the enviroment green. Students will be asked to bring in a few pieces of older clothing to cut, redesign, and turn those rags to beautiful stiches. Students will learn how to hand sew add embellishments, and begin to sew on a machine. Students will also learn how to do embroidery and plan out a fashion design fit for the run way.

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Ages 12 to 17

Blacksmithing

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Learn to bend and shape steel in The Crucible’s smithy as you practice traditional blacksmithing techniques such as drawing, bending, twisting, punching, slitting and drifting using the forge and anvil. Students will learn to forge with confidence and complete projects such as a bracelet, hook, fork, and spoon.

Blacksmithing Immersion Workshop

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The Crucible presents its exclusive beginning and intermediate level youth weeklong workshop. Students will embark on a full week study in blacksmithing, becoming young artisans by the week’s end.  Students will learn theory, principles, and extensive techniques that will give them the necessary skills to design and create their own independent projects. No experience is necessary.

Portraits in Clay

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In this class students will use hand building techniques to create contemporary busts out of clay. This class is great for youth interested using clay to sculpt portraits and take their clay skills to the next level! We will also finish the class with a raku, a hands on firing technique involving fire and smoke to create beautiful metallic glaze finishes.

Creatures in Fused Glass

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Youth artists will create a variety of organisms and habitats in both warm and cold glass. Students will learn how to cut, shape, and embellish glass using a variety of tools, molds, and machines.  2D and 3D projects may include fused tiles, jewelry, treasure chests, wind chimes, cityscapes, toadstools, insects,and jellyfish. Young artists will be encouraged to choose projects and create art based on their own interests.

Glass Flameworking

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Discover flameworking, a type of hot glasswork. You will learn to manipulate molten glass over a torch with confidence and create beautiful and unique marbles and figures out of colored glass.

Glass Flameworking Immersion Workshop

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The Crucible presents its exclusive beginning and intermediate level youth weeklong workshop. Students will embark on a full week study in glass flameworking, becoming young artisans by the week’s end.  Students will learn theory, principles, and extensive techniques that will give them the necessary skills to design and create their own independent projects. No experience is necessary.

Cast Glass Sculpture

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This class will explore the use of clay and wax to create a positive form such as a starfish or almost any object really and transform it into a glass sculpture. Students will learn how to sculpt wax or clay and create molds using plaster and silica. Molds will then act as vessel for glass to be melted into by using a kiln as a heat source. The end result will be a singular object in colored glass.

Art Bike Frame Alteration

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Customize your bicycle in one of the most exciting kids activities at The Crucible! Students will learn basic fabrication skills in MIG welding, Oxyacetylene torch, grinding and finishing to reconstruct their bicycles. Bicycle frames will be stripped and students will learn to redesign and alter handlebars, rims, seat posts, and frames to create a unique, hip and one-of-a-kind look that will make them the talk of the neighborhood. Students are required to bring their own bicycle.

Bike Chariot Fabrication

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Create a two-wheeled bicycle trailer to carry whatever your heart desires, be it a kinetic contraption, a pet cage, a puppet theater, or your name in huge letters. Learn how to salvage bicycle parts, cut and weld steel, use carpentry power tools, and incorporate objects you bring from home to fabricate a spectacular bike chariot to trail you while you ride your bike.

Glass-Tube Sculpture: Intro to Neon

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Learn the science behind neon gases as you are taught how to shape, bend and manipulate glass tubes into letters and figures. Colored sand will be substituted for neon gas in the final project to create a brightly colored sculpture that you can display with pride.

Leather Working

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Thousands of years ago, humans around the world learned to make useful and beautiful items from treated animal hides.  In this class you will learn techniques for working with leather, including cutting, edging, stitching, dyeing and oiling. Setting rivets as well as design and safety guidelines will also be covered.  Each student will make a belt, pouch, or simple jewelry.

Fashion Forward

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Students enter the world of fashion as they learn the social and political implications of clothing.  In this class focused on recycling, students will be asked to bring in articles of clothing they would like to alter or choose from items we have collected to recreate one-of-a-kind garments. Students will learn the skills necessary to disassemble, redesign, and repurpose garments utilizing scrap fabric and additional embellishments.  Students will acquire confidence in their vision, basic skills to create fun new things to wear, and the ability to take fashion FORWARD.

Exploration in Metal Jewelry

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Make a fashion statement! Using copper, silver and other nonferrous metals, you’ll learn jewelry and metal art skills to create trendy jewelry of your own design. In this hands-on class you’ll be taught filing, sanding, texturing and polishing techniques used in creating metal jewelry. You will leave this class wearing a creation of your own design.

Casting Wax to Silver Jewelry

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Learn the lost wax casting process, an age-old sculptural jewelry- casting process that involves creating a positive model out of wax, using that model to make a mold, then using the mold to cast a form in metal. You’ll carve, cast, and finish at least one pendant or ring in silver, and experiment with different types of wax and their working qualities as you learn the techniques and tools of this process. Bring your sketches and ideas for jewelry. Prerequisite: Exploration in Metal Jewelry

Jewelry Immersion Workshop

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The Crucible presents its exclusive beginning and intermediate level youth weeklong workshop. Students will embark on a full week study in jewelry, becoming young artisans by the week’s end.  Students will learn theory, principles, and extensive techniques that will give them the necessary skills to design and create their own independent projects. No experience is necessary.

Enameling

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Explore the ancient art of fusing glass to metal in enameling! Students will learn to apply glossy bright colors to copper shapes using a variety of techniques. They’ll make a wall plaque, several pieces of jewelry or magnets, and fire their pieces in a kiln. No previous jewelry making, enameling or metalworking experience necessary.

Radical Robots

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Build a simple remote-controlled robot. From the wheels up, you’ll create your robot’s shape and personality from salvaged materials, mechanisms and electrical components. You’ll also learn soldering, mechanical construction techniques and how to remove and repurpose these items. Each student will receive a kit of motors, wheels and a remote control toy to use in their project.

Kinetics Immersion Workshop

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The Crucible presents its exclusive beginning and intermediate level youth weeklong workshop. Students will embark on a full week study in kinetics, becoming young artisans by the week’s end.  Students will learn theory, principles, and extensive techniques that will give them the necessary skills to design and create their own independent projects. No experience is necessary.

Adventures in Sand Casting

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In this introduction to foundry processes, you’ll turn your ideas into cast-metal sculptures as you learn the basics of metal casting. You will make a sculpture, create a mold in resin-bonded sand, and then watch as molten aluminum is poured into your mold. When your piece has cooled, you’ll open your mold to your very own finished sculpture!

ARC Welding

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Learn to fuse, cut, bend and shape metal. This intensive introduction to stick welding (also known as arc welding) and oxy/acetylene torch cutting is taught by a technical pro. In-depth demonstrations and one-on-one guidance will be given on the safe and effective operation of welding equipment as instructors help you create a small welded sculpture or project.

ARC Welding Immersion Workshop

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The Crucible presents its exclusive beginning and intermediate level youth weeklong workshop. Students will embark on a full week study in ARC welding, becoming young artisans by the week’s end.  Students will learn theory, principles, and extensive techniques that will give them the necessary skills to design and create their own independent projects. No experience is necessary.

MIG Welding

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Metal inert gas (MIG) welding, also known as wire-feed welding, falls between arc welding and TIG in the welding spectrum. Quieter and cleaner (and some say easier) than arc welding, MIG welding is typically used in production fabrication such as furniture making, light construction, and auto restoration. You’ll learn the basics of MIG welding, as well as plasma cutting and other fabrication processes. Knowledge of arc welding is handy but not essential.

Woodturning

Using a lathe, you can turn a rough piece of wood into a beautifully shaped spindle or bowl. You will learn the basics of the turning process as you explore small bowl turning and spindle turning. The class will cover tool usage and sharpening, as well as wood selection, preparation, and finishing.

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Ages 14-17

Glass Blowing

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In this introductory glass blowing class students will practice and learn the basic skills and techniques that will allow them to create their very own hand blown glass work . Through supportive instruction and a team environment, students will gather from the furnace and learn to use the tools to manipulate and shape the glass into paperweights, cups, bowls, sculptures and more.

Glass Blowing Immersion Workshop

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The Crucible presents its exclusive beginning and intermediate level youth weeklong workshop. Students will embark on a full week study in glass blowing, becoming young artisans by the week’s end.  Students will learn theory, principles, and extensive techniques that will give them the necessary skills to design and create their own independent projects. No experience is necessary.

TIG Welding

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Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) welding is a highly precise method of welding that makes clean and focused welds on everything from super thin to very thick materials. Using the TIG welding process, an expert can weld any metal that can be welded and can even join dissimilar metals. You will learn the basics of TIG welding by working with stainless steel. The class will also introduce the plasma cutter and a variety of shop sheet metal tools. The instructor will assign sculpture projects that allow you to put your creativity and welding skills to use.

Beads, Bugs, & Monsters!

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Monster expert Ralph McCaskey takes you on a journey in soft glass, sharing secrets to creating colorful glass beads, bugs, and monsters with crazy eyes and whacky facial expressions using an oxy-propane torch.  We will cover bead surface patterns, shaping and forming glass, and we’ll take a brief historical look at monsters to inspire your very own projects.