So, I have heard amazing things about these classes, I heard they were a lot of fun and the things you learned in the first class alone was worth what you pay for the entire course.
So naturally I was super excited when myself and a friend of mine signed up together. I do have a good bit of cake experience but my friend has none. We wanted to take all the courses together so naturally we need to start at the basics. I know i'm lacking a good foundation since i'm self taught so I figured I'm bound to learn a good couple of things. Paging through the lesson book the potential to learn with the Wilton material is there, but the instructor is horrid! She is the most unengaging and uninformative "teacher" I have ever seen. She was nice and and courteous but The class started late, she didn't bring any of her own materials except for the lesson book and opted to demonstrate with other student's tools, took a phone call during the class and her playing/texting on her cellphone while we practiced the basic star tip technique was just ridiculous to me.
I walked away learning maybe 2 things and my friend who can't bake her way out of a paper bag even felt she hardly learned anything.
she made a point to mention she has a lot stress going on, So I am trying very hard to chalk up her family situation to this very bad first impression. But if things don't improve over our last few classes. I will just be buying the kits and lesson plans and teaching myself and sending a nice formal complaint to Wilton because driving a half hour from home and paying for courses that range between $20-45 depending on if there is a discount going on to watch someone play on their cellphone is unacceptable.
If its any consolation, it is likely an isolated experience. I have taken many Wilton courses in the last 4 years with several different instructors and while all have their strengths and their own weaknesses, I was always pleased with what I learned and how much I learned. That's why I keep going back.
I did have a problem similar to yours for a "project class". The instructor was not prepared at all, it was her first time teaching it and she was not able to demonstrate the techniques. She also took some calls in the class. I was extremely frustrated.
If I can make a suggestion, I would follow-up with the store manager and Wilton (their contact info is on their website). It might even be a good idea to do it now, so that something can be done for the remaining 3 classes. I unfortunately waited until the end of my project class to complain and while they did speak to the instructor about it, they couldn't do anything concrete to fix it for me since the course was done. If they know about it now, they might be able to do something for you for the other classes/nights.
I hope this helps. If all else fails, I would try finding a different instructor or a different store for a class (mention this to the store manager to see how they react to that prospect, usually managers don't like to lose customers!).
All said, everything that you heard about Wilton classes is true (in my experience and opinion), unfortunately sometimes a few bad apples spoil the whole cart.
Good luck and keep us posted on how things work out.
The class is too costly to just decide to stop going. I guess if talking to a manager does not "fix" her I'm prepared to try and make the most of it by practicing the lessons ahead of time then I could just seek her help when i hit the things that stumped me come class time - most particularly writing and those freaking roses! ugh they are the vain of my existence! Otherwise I'm already somewhat well versed on just about everything else in the basics course. but I feel really bad for my friend Amanda, she was really looking forward to learning the ins and outs of cake decorating, I talked her into these classes and I feel like I mislead her.
I'm tempted to get all the classes under my belt just to help me qualify as an instructor, so other people don't have to be stuck with instructors like her.
Be firm, good luck and most of all....have fun
It would be less stressful for your instructor if she stayed off her phone and focused on the students. Good thing I'm not in your class...I'd probably say something like "so, let's all turn off our cell phones and have a nice quiet class and have fun decorating and learning". ARGH, I'm getting mad just thinking about your class !!!!!!
I'm in agreement with the others who have said to consider making a comment to the store manager. Particularly if the behavior continues. A direct comment to the WMI may be the only thing necessary to bring her to know she's not giving her best ~ whether that's said to her alone or a comment in class (I'd try it alone first). All of us know that if we do not treat our students well, they will not continue to be our students.
However, our second class was no better, we arrived exactly on time and she wasn't even in the class room, The class ran late while i didn't really mind it likely wouldn't have happen had she spent less time on her cell phone and delegated time more effectively.
we were also informed on our first class that there was a chance class 3 and 4 may end up being one big 4 hour class because of a family medical situation and that we should show up 2 hours early, why we weren't over joyed with combining the 2 classes especially since your supposed to go home and design a cake and make some flowers in advance after class 3. we accepted the possibility and figured it would work its self out. In the class just passing (class 2) she said she'd call us and let us know for sure if we were combining the classes or not, ...class is tomorrow, neither of us have heard from her. We aren't sure if we show up early with all the stuff in tow for class 3 and 4 or if we should show up at our usual time. If we show up 2 hours early and she is not there, we either take the half hour drive home, and then return, or sit around and figure out how to blow 2 hours hoping our icing doesn't turn to soup in the car. or we show up at our regular time, and assuming she may have showed up early may have left, and we miss out on our last 2 classes and is likely where I would lose my cool and throw a huge stink in the store.
I really didn't want to complain because she does seems really nice, and I didn't want to hurt her feelings by having a manager tell her she's teaching inadequately, the class is very small so it could be obvious on who complained, but she's being beyond inconsiderate to where I almost don't care if I hurt her feelings anymore.
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