Trade School is a non-traditional learning community that runs on barter and not on a monetary exchange.

The Trade School network is a collective of self-organised barter-for-knowledge schools across the world. Trade School began in January 2009 as an experiment by a group of artists in New York City who wanted to celebrate local wisdom, mutual respect, and the social nature of exchange.

Their simple idea works like this…

  1. People offer to teach a class about something they know.
  2. They decide on a list of barter items they're interested in receiving. Barter items can be in the form of goods or services, both tangible and intangible. For example: jars, music tips, clothes, vegetables, or help with something like finding an apartment.
  3. Students sign up for their class by agreeing to bring something from their list.

Dates & Times

Trade School Digbeth programmes classes annually, with one series of bi-weekly classes taking place over 6 months and then repeating for the following six months.  

SEMESTER ONE: 4 Oct 2017 - 21 March 2018

Every first & third Wednesday of the month, 3-5pm

SEMESTER TWO: 9 April - 24 Sept 2018

Every second & fourth Monday of the month, 10am-12pm

How Trade School works

Anyone with a practical skill, talent or knowledge to share can offer a Trade School class. No teaching experience is required. You can sign up to teach by filling in a short form here

After your class idea has been agreed and you have told us what you would like as your barter exchange for sharing/teaching your idea, we will put your class on the Trade School website for learners to sign up.

Everyone is welcome to attend classes.

No money exchanges hands.

On the day of the class, you will meet your learners, receive your barter items, and run your class. We are there to help and the atmosphere is always relaxed, friendly and fun. Upcoming classes are listed below

Upcoming Trade School Classes

Trade School Digbeth: Personal Safety

This session with Alison Baskerville of ROAR will teach you the basics of personal safety.   ROAR Safety launch session is a two hour class looking at personal safety measures built with mental health and an understanding of self care…

Trade School DIgbeth: CV Visionary Workshop

This session with Lauren Valler of Habakuk UK will show you how to write the perfect CV for you.   In this class you will learn how to discover your strengths, how to make the most of your experience and…

Trade School Digbeth: How To Create A Podcast

This session with Aquila Edwards will show you how to create a podcast.     In this workshop: Aquila will lay out how to come up with a brief of creating a podcast, drafting ideas, finding equipment through to uploading…

Trade School Digbeth: Stitch Share

This session with Tina Francis will show you how to stitch.   In this class: You will learn 3 different canvas work stitches and then use them to make a small sampler. Hand stitch is a great way to spend…

Trade School Digbeth: Smartphone Photo Skills

Join Paul for a workshop learning basic photography techniques This Trade School class will enable you to make the most of your smartphone and improve your smartphone photography skills! Do remember to bring a fully charged smartphone! Barter Items to…