Overview of Textiles at OLA            


      Textiles at OLA is an exciting subject which mixes practical learning with modern technology, whilst encouraging all pupils to build confidence and learn independently. The use of technology is fully embedded in the Textiles curriculum and pupils regularly use iPads, the vinyl cutter and Adobe Photoshop/Illustrator to extend their learning.


      Textiles is part of the core curriculum followed by all pupils in Years 7 and 8, where it is taught for half a year alongside other areas of Design and Technology. In Year 9 pupils can opt to continue their Textiles education and the GCSE course begins in Year 10. At OLA we also offer an A Level in this subject.


      The Textiles room has benefited from much improvement and investment over the past few years. We have recently purchased a class set of brand new Bernina sewing machines which all pupils are taught to use independently at the start of Year 7.  In addition to new sewing machines we have also acquired 4 new pattern cutting tables, giving the pupils room to work effectively in a studio style environment. The classroom also benefits from a trolley of iPads which are used across all year groups, alongside the dedicated CAD suite (shared with the Food and Nutrition department) where all the computers have the full Adobe Creative Cloud software installed.


      Years 7 to 9 Textiles Curriculum  


      In Year 7 pupils have the opportunity to create a 'Pugglie' which is an ugly monster that is produced using sustainable fabrics and components. They are taught a range of machine and hand sewing techniques, and encouraged to use them to enhance their 'Pugglie' design ideas.


      Year 8 pupils look at commercial fabric printing techniques. Using Graffiti as a source of inspiration they will use the iPads to create a repeat pattern which will then be outsourced to a professional printing company to sublimate their design on to fabric. The fabric produced is used to make a pair of drawstring pyjama shorts and pupils add a pocket and/or decoration to an existing T shirt to complement their product.


      In Year 9 pupils will investigate batch production and Biomimicry. Taking inspiration from nature, they will learn a range of new techniques and processes.  These skills will be documented in a beautifully presented sketch book that they will be able to use for reference in years to come. Towards the end of the module pupils will work in teams to produce a range of cushions that will 'Mimic Nature' in some way. They will learn how products are produced in industry and contribute to several aspects of all of the products being made by the group.


      The work in Years 7 to 9 is assessed in line with the GCSE marking criteria.  Practical work is assessed at the end of the project and folder work and homework assignments are regularly assessed throughout the term. The combination of practical work, and all written based work accounts for 60% of the final mark, while an end of rotation examination accounts for the other 40%.


      Pupils are required to bring in fabric from home to recycle in Year 7. Pupils in Year 8 are invoiced a small fee for the fabric they produce when making their pyjamas shorts.  In addition, they are asked to bring in a plain white T Shirt or vest top from home to embellish to complete their pyjamas. Pupils in Year 9 generally source fabric from the textiles cupboard for their cushion project. From time to time they may need to purchase additional materials as required.


      Trips for Textiles in Years 7 to 9


      There may be the opportunity for pupils to take part in a combined Textiles/Design and Technology trip in the Trinity Term of Year 7 and/or Year 8.  This will be charged at cost.  Year 9 pupils are often invited to attend the GCSE Textiles trip.


      Co-curricular Textiles Activities in Years 7 to 9


      Ms Gable offers sock club for Years 7 and 8 on a weekly basis.  Pupils build upon skills taught in lessons to create animals and creatures out of new socks.



      Textiles Curriculum for Years 10 and 11


      This curriculum is undergoing change at present meaning that a different specification is being used in each year.  Pupils will be expected to provide their own fabric for all projects during Years 10 and 11.  In addition to fabrics, pupils may be asked to purchase extra components of sample fabrics for their development work.


      Year 10:


      AQA Fashion and Textiles: Technical Award Specification code 3720


      This new and exciting Technical Award qualification in Fashion and Textiles has been developed for young learners who want to study textiles in a practical way.  It replaces the out-going GCSE in Textiles Technology.  Technical Awards will be equivalent to a GCSE qualification.  They will be considered as equal to a GCSE in fulfilling the entry requirements for post 16 study.  Please note that this specification has not yet been accredited and so some details may change before September 2017.


      Pupils will develop a range of skills and knowledge including:-


      1. A greater understanding of the fashion industry and design related areas

      2. Working with fashion design briefs

      3. Learning basic pattern cutting skills

      4. Researching about relevant fashion designers and textiles artists

      5. Learning an exciting range of garment construction techniques

      6. Developing fabric and surface decoration techniques

      7. Learning the basics of fashion drawing and interpreting your designs and ideas on paper

      8. Being given the opportunity to design and make a range of textile products and samples




      Unit 1: Skills Demonstration - Internally Assessed (30%)


      Pupils have the chance to carry out a number of bite-sized projects to demonstrate their competency in the core skills outlined in the specification.  Practical evidence of 12 core skills will be recorded in a portfolio.  One of the skills assessed will be teamwork.


      Unit 2: Extended Making Project - Internally Assessed (30%)


      For this unit, pupils will undertake an Extended Making Project that showcases the skills they have developed in unit 1.  Pupils will develop skills in planning and development, making, testing and evaluation and communication.  The Extending Making Project will respond to a brief set by the Awarding Body.


      Unit 3: External Assessment (written examination – 40%)

      Pupils will study the fundamentals of the fashion and textiles industry and the industrial and commercial processes that exist within it.  They will learn about materials and their properties and also about possible careers within the industry.


      Year 11:


      AQA Textiles Technology Specification Code 4570


      Textiles Technology develops a wide range of skills and knowledge and is a good area of study for those interested in any aspect of the subject.  Areas covered include choice and use of fabrics, design, creative textiles, use and care of equipment, fibres and fabrics, technical textiles, computer aided design (CAD) and manufacturing (CAM), and ethical trading and sustainability.  Alongside creative and technical skills pupils will develop: problem solving, investigative skills and decision making expertise.

      The controlled assessments cover a wide range of topics designed to encourage individuals to develop their particular strengths and interests within Textiles.  Areas of study on offer include interior design, the influence of other cultures, recycled fashion, fashion trends, Fairtrade textiles, Techno textiles, textiles for children and fashion influenced by another culture.  There are approximately twelve design briefs to choose from.




      Examination: 2 hours (40% of the final grade)


      Controlled Assessment: (60% of the final grade)


      Trips for Textiles in Years 10 and 11


      Each year there is a combined GCSE and A Level day trip to a Fashion or Textiles related establishment.  Previous trips have visited the Clothes Show Live in Birmingham, The Victoria and Albert Museum and the Design Museum in London.


      Co-curricular Textiles Activities in Years 10 and 11


      Mrs Sharkey offers Adobe Photoshop/Adobe Illustrator club every week to help pupils build their computer aided design skills.


      Sixth Form Textiles Curriculum


      Please click here for full details on Sixth Form Textiles.