Subject Overview Textiles in Design Technology

The subject of Textiles in Design and Technology provides the opportunity for pupils to learn and develop practical and skills and a knowledge of fabrics that helps pupils to progress in their practical work. As in all the D&T specialisms, the aim is to develop creative thinkers who can respond to challenges and develop ideas and products that show some understanding of social, economic and environmental issues.

Key Stage 3

The curriculum is organised on a carousel basis where groups rotate each term, between Textiles, Food, Product Design and STEM and the projects in each specialist area, are taught in chronological order.

In Textiles, students begin by learning basic skills and become familiar with the safe use of equipment.

Year 7

In Year 7 pupils work on ‘Textiles Project One’, where they learn about basic textiles equipment and safety. Through a series of small focused tasks, they become familiar with sewing machines and have a chance to become skilful in the use of them. They also have a chance to learn and improve hand sewing, and find out how fibres can be turned into fabrics and their characteristics.

Year 8

In Year 8 if students have not visited Textiles in the Year 7 rotation, then they begin their experience in Textiles with ‘Project One’, (as outlined above).

For those who are returning to textiles, pupils work on ‘Textiles Project Two’. In this module they build on the skills they acquired in project one and learn new processes such as, seams, patchwork and applique. Pupils make a product and make choices about the features they include. The use of Computer Aided Design (CAD) and Computer Aided Manufacture (CAM) is introduced when the pupils learn about the ‘heat transfer’ printing process in this project.There is also a focused design task to introduce the concept of innovative design to the pupils.

Year 9

In Year 9, most pupils will begin ‘Project Three’, but some students will work on Project Two, (depending on the timetable they followed as they rotated through D&T in Year 7 and 8).
Project Three, allows students to work in a more independent way as they draw on their past learning to Up-Cycle old textile products to create new ones. There is a focus on sustainability and the role designer can play in improving the environmental impact of products. Pupils also, have a chance to use CAM Embroidery machines to personalise the products made in this module.

Key Stage 4

Textiles as a Specialist Art & Design GCSE. This course offers a chance for students to enjoy the creative, practical side of Textiles that they experience in their KS3 ‘Design Technology’ Textiles. There is no written exam in this GCSE, instead students sit a practical exam.

Textile Design as a specialist Art and Design GCSE, is the creation of designs and products made from woven, knitted, stitched or printed fabrics and involves a working understanding of fibres, yarns and fabrics. (Students will work in the Textile room and have access to sewing machines and other specialist equipment.)

Pupils taking this GCSE must explore the work of historical or contemporary textile designers and makers and look at the different purposes and functions of Textile Design in a way appropriate to their own work.

Projects may include printed, sewn and dyed methods of textile design, fashion design and making or embellished textiles.

As this Textile GCSE is a specialism within an Art & Design qualification, the work takes a visual form, so research will involve collecting images and making studies from them by drawing in a range of different media, using methods such as collage, rubbings and taking photographs to record images. Some annotations and notes need to be made to go with the images and explain opinions, thinking and ideas.

Pupils must demonstrate the ability to work creatively with processes and techniques which are appropriate to the theme, or ideas that they are developing. They may choose to use weaving, stitching, surface printing, embroidery (machine or hand), batik, appliqué and collage to develop and complete final pieces of practical work.

There is a 10 hour practical terminal exam (timed to fit into school hours), in which students are allowed to prepare a project in the weeks leading up to the exam dates, and then in the actual exam time, they make the final outcome that they have previously decided upon.

Course Structure

Year 10

Year 10 students spend the Autumn and half of the Spring Terms, following a foundation curriculum that allows them to acquire skills and learn what a GCSE project looks like and feels like to work through. The use of a Sketchbook and research through looking, as well as, discovery of knowledge are all introduced and practised.
Towards the end of the Spring term, students are encouraged to develop their work in a more individual way. After Easter, they embark on the main ‘Portfolio Project’ or Coursework that will be submitted for the GCSE. This project continues into Year 11.

Year 11

In Year 11, students have the Autumn Term to complete their Portfolio submission, which represents 60% of the overall mark.

In the Spring Term they will receive the ‘Titles’, for their projects from the examination board. Students carry out relevant research, drawing and development of ideas in order to prepare for their 10 hour practical exam that usually takes place in April. (The exam accounts for 40% of the overall mark.)

Once the practical exam is complete, students can turn their attention back to their portfolio presentation. All the work in the portfolio may need to be displayed for the examiner, if their work is chosen for moderation and so it is important to learn good presentation skills at this time.

2018 GCSE Textiles Gallery

2018 GCSE Textiles Gallery