Chapter 4: Events, Classes, Workshops, and Scriptoria

The Atlantian Arts & Sciences Handbook

The SCA would not be a society if it were not for the gathering of people doing things together, whether in person, or virtually. This chapter covers various ways branches of people can participate in the arts and sciences together. This includes classes, guilds, workshops and lyceum. The role of the MoAS is not necessarily that of organizing these branch activities, but rather that of facilitating their organization, promotion, and success.


Although the KMoAS does not require the office holder to run the arts and sciences activities at branch events, one should make every effort to see that someone does run arts and science activities at the event and help. Check early and often with the baronage/Seneschal/autocrat to determine what the expectations are regarding who is responsible for running the arts and sciences activities at the event to avoid misunderstandings. While in the event planning stage, it may be helpful to contact the autocrat to ensure that the activities are coordinated and in the event announcement. Throughout this handbook there will be suggestions and tips for running various activities.

There are many different types of activities that can be held at the events. These can include, but are not limited to, classes, bardic circles, working demonstrations, open displays, contests, workshops, dances, and discussion branches. What the MoAS does, will in large part, depend on the activity level and interests of the local branch. It may take some time for the MoAS to find just the right thing for them.

The current MoAS should consult the previous MoAS of the branch, officers in nearby branches, the MoAS mailing list, and some of the active members of the branch, when necessary. Often, the experienced members of the branch may have some best practices. The MoAS should be open to new ideas as well as old ideas and be flexible and be willing to accept help if assistance is offered. The MoAS does not have to do this alone but should be able to delegate. When delegating, always remember to give credit where credit is due. If someone else coordinates the site, picks the judges, runs the arts and sciences, and other responsibilities, give them the credit for doing so. This prevents resentment and makes people much more willing to assist the MoAS in the future.


Some arts and science activities are at their best in a classroom setting in which a volunteer instructs a class of others. These classes can range from hands-on make-and-take style events to a university-style lecture. With creativity on the part of both the branch and the MoAS, there is no limit to the topics and opportunities that classes can cover. By getting to know their branch, an effective MoAS will be able to gather information on what classroom topics and styles will best serve their branch at any given time. Ideally, there may be several people interested in an art medium, craft, science, or technique, and a skilled artist or researcher can be found to teach or demonstrate.

Best Practices

  1. Schedule a time and date that works for those interested and find a place that meets the needs of the medium, teacher, and students.
  2. Decide with the instructor on material fees and/or a list of materials and tools that students should bring.
  3. Ask the instructor how much time they need to prepare, what assistance they may need, or if they have an ideal limit of students.
  4. Promote the class and confirm reservations.
  5. Once the event has concluded, be sure to count how many students attended, what was covered, when it was held, and any other pertinent information to report to the branch’s MoAS, so they can pass it along in their report.
  6. Some classes can count towards Atlantian University credits, if they meet specific conditions, so contact the University Chancellor for details ahead of time.


As part of a branch’s activities, many arts and sciences officers set up workshops. These can be formal or informal and cover whatever subject is available and supported by attendance and the proper materials. They are generally scheduled during an evening or on a weekend day when there is no local event going on. Topics can be as broad and as narrow as the organizer would like.

Tips for a Successful Workshop

  1. Pick a topic on which several individuals in the branch would like to work or learn.
  2. Have someone available at the workshop that can act as a facilitating instructor.
  3. Specify, prior to the workshop, whether individuals need to purchase their own materials or if they will be provided at the workshop. If there is a cost for attendees, they will need to know this well ahead of time.
  4. Let attendees know how long the workshop will last and what time it begins and ends.
  5. Make sure the location has the adequate and proper space required to work on the project in question.
  6. Have a general plan on how the workshop will proceed.


If there is no scriptorium (scribal workshop) in the area, the MoAS might consider sponsoring one. This gives the branch the opportunity to reduce the backlog of a local barony or the Kingdom or provide promissory scrolls. It is relatively easy to set up a scriptorium. To get more information on starting a scriptorium, contact the Kingdom’s Clerk Signet. Interested parties can obtain a copy of the Atlantian Scribes Handbook from the Clerk Signet to help them begin.

On-Line Activities

As the Society continues to evolve their on-line (virtual) presence, all of the above activities are being adapted for this new venue. The MoAS should work with other members of the group, including the Web Minister, and Social Media Deputy (if any) to explore ways that existing A&S activities can be done online, as well as entirely new opportunities.