Year 7 Curriculum

During Year 7 the pupils complete a cross-curricular art / textiles puppet-making task. During art lessons they produce the puppet head, facial features and body then they come to textiles for a ten week unit in which they make the costume or clothing items.

The aim is to produce a puppet using both art and textile skills and to make it fun and imaginative.

During this ten week unit pupils develop the following skills:

  • Learn how to use basic sewing equipment
  • Understand simple joining methods such as pinning and tacking
  • Learn how to use a permanent joining method such as a plain seam
  • Learn how to thread and use the sewing machine
  • Understand how to neaten a plain seam using a machine or pinking shears
  • Understand health and safety issues when using the sewing machine and other equipment
  • Learn how to do simple decorative techniques such as basic appliqué
  • Understand how to produce a well presented and detailed A3 design sheet
  • Evaluate how their work progressed.

Year 8 Curriculum

During Year 8 the pupils experience textile decorative techniques, straightforward sewing machine control skills and construction techniques to produce a cushion based on a beach /seaside theme.

The aim is to expand the pupils’ use of materials, techniques and equipment, to use decoration and embellishment as part of their cushion design.

The task will include the following skills:

  • Produce a research mood board based on a beach /seaside theme
  • Experience various decorative techniques that are to be used in their cushion design such as shibori , tie dye, batik, stencilling and basic printing
  • Develop their appliqué skills to they know how to neaten fabric edges with machine zigzag and produce more complex designs
  • Develop basic construction techniques to produce a cushion
  • Develop their sewing machine skills further
  • Produce detailed, well presented Initial ideas and final cushion design sheets
  • Evaluate the work they have produced.

Year 9 Curriculum

In Year 9 the aim is to develop the pupils’ sewing machine skills more fully and for them to use a simple commercial pattern to make a garment in preparation for GCSE and as a life skill.

This task will develop the following skills:

  • Learning to read and understand information on a commercial pattern
  • Lay out and cutting out of a garment
  • Commercial pattern symbols and what they mean
  • How to do tailors’ tacks
  • When making a garment, the importance of accuracy and quality
  • Garment shaping techniques such as gathers and darts (dependent on selected pattern)
  • Plain seams and neatening
  • The use of fastenings in garments
  • The use of the sewing machine for garment construction.

Year 10 & 11 Curriculum GCSE (optional subject)

Examination Board: AQA
Specification Number: 4570 (Full Course)

Why choose to study textiles at GCSE?

When we think of textiles, common applications, such as clothing and furnishing easily spring to mind. Yet today’s many and varied applications of textiles and textile technology mean that in reality these comprise only a fraction of the full story. New technology in contemporary textiles is narrowing the gap between the world of art, design, engineering and science, producing revolutionary textiles for the 21st century.

New and different combinations of traditional and new textile and non-textile materials continually push the boundaries of possibility within areas of art, design, science and engineering.

Course Details

You will need to be well motivated as coursework research and investigation will need to be done outside of school. Much of the work centres on how industry operates and industrial practices, so students are aware of how the product they design and make could be mass produced in industry.

You will be taught:

  • Design skills;
  • making skills;
  • fibres and fabric properties and characteristics;
  • construction and uses of textile fibres and fabrics;
  • product maintenance;
  • suitability and fitness for purpose;
  • finishing processes; dying and printing;
  • decoration and enhancement;
  • fabric finishes;
  • pre-manufactured components;
  • CAD/CAM (Computer Aided Design and Computer Aided Manufacture) in component production; design and market influences; product analysis;
  • image;
  • lifestyle;
  • co-ordination;
  • ambience and harmony reflected in past and present textile designers;
  • analysis of products on the market;
  • evaluation techniques;
  • quality assurance;
  • testing and fitness for purpose;
  • social and cultural influences on the consumer market;
  • consumer choice;
  • consumer rights legislation and codes of practice;
  • moral and environmental issues;
  • health and safety issues;
  • systems and control;
  • industrial processes and production techniques;
  • use of ICT;
  • use of CAD/CAM in industry and the manufacture of textile products;
  • industrial and market accessories;
  • advertising and marketing.

Examination Details

Written paper: 40% of the total marks
One paper with two sections: (120 marks) 2 hours

Section A

30 marks
A design based question based on context supplied before the exam.

Section B

90 marks
Covers all aspects of the specification content.

All questions are compulsory.


Project – (90 marks) 60% of total marks, taking approximately 45 hours. Coursework will be internally assessed and externally moderated. Coursework consists of a single design-and-make activity selected from a choice of set tasks, which addresses all the assessment objectives in an integrated way. The evidence required for the project consists of three dimensional produce and a concise design folder and/or the appropriate ICT evidence.

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