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Tucked away in a back room on the 3rd floor of a nondescript church in NYC’s NoLita neighborhood is Trade School. An initiative of Our Goods, Trade School encourages students to “barter for instruction.” Basically you take a free class, and in exchange, you teach the teacher something they want to learn about! Classes range from making balloon animals to making soup, from learning dance forms to public advocacy, and even a How to Teach A Class class.

This past weekend I took a 1.5 hour class with Brooklyn’s locavore and foraging specialist Leda Meredith. The class was Food Preservation for cans and jars, and was attended by a dozen students. In exchange, sometime in the future, I’ll teach Leda on how to use File Transfer Protocal (FTP) to connect to her own websites and servers! A real deal for me, because whereas I make my own kombucha, kim chi, and sauerkraut, I was unaware of the simple science behind hermetically sealing jars for pickling food — whereas I can teach about FTP while I sleep!

Classes run until April 17th so if you’re looking to learn or even to teach, get in touch with Trade School.

Nick Normal

I’m an artist & maker. A lifelong biblioholic, and advocate for all-things geekathon. Home is Long Island City, Queens, which I consider the greatest place on Earth. 5-year former Resident of Flux Factory, co-organizer for World Maker Faire (NYC), and blogger all over the net. Howdy!


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