Article in Sewing World, end of term activities & much more!

A great website I found!  - This is a great website designed specially for young people who can showcase their work. It’s a bit American but anyone can upload things from anywhere and it is a great way to share ideas and see what others do. You could use it with a whole class or recommend it to the budding designers in your class who like to interact with others and show off their work. The work can be anything that has a creative focus. 

End of year activities

As the end of the year approaches it can be hard to keep the momentum going especially as many schools frown on the showing of random DVDs towards the end of term. A great compromise is to show a DVD that is really fun to watch but where there is loads of learning going on as well. 

A good example is a the film ‘Kinky Boots’. Now I know the name doesn’t sound suitable but believe me it is appropriate viewing and has loads of excellent learning points. Whilst the main character is man that dresses as a woman, and the focus of the film is on a company who design and manufacture high heels for men it is a 12 rating and it sounds worse than it is! You will need to watch it to double check you are happy to show it especially as at one point there is a little bit of swearing (but none other than that). 

It is based on the true story of a Northampton traditional shoe maker who had to develop their line or go bust (first learning point!). They identify high heels for men as a niche market (second learning point) and there is a lot of focus on the design process and getting the design right for the client (third learning point). The importance of fashion shows are also raised (fourth learning point) as is the manufacturing of the shoes (fifth learning point). There are additional learning points related to values issues too if you want to go into them. I suggest you watch the film over a number of lessons using questions to focus students for each viewing along with follow up discussions and activities as you go along.  

Article in Sewing World magazine

As part of my work to raise the profile of textiles in the wider community some of you may know I wrote an article for Flair magazine earlier in the year. This is an embroidery machine magazine and the aim was to reach a different target market with the ‘Believe in D&T’ message. That article can be read on my website at 


Following on from that article I have another in the July edition of Sewing World magazine so take a look if you get the chance. It has a similar focuses to the original article on how textiles is taught in schools but with a slightly different slant. The magazine itself is quite ‘crafty’ but the aim is to hit a wider market and to try and breakdown some of the stereotyped views of our subject. 

The article might be useful if you are trying to put together an argument to senior leaders, parents or anyone else about what textiles is all about and how it isn’t the old fashioned ’needlework’ some still see it as. Even my own mother in law said she read it twice as she just never realised things had changed so much! 

You can now electronic components from my website!

In my updates last week I mentioned a few ideas and links to support you if you are reviewing and updating your schemes of work. If you are wanting to add electronic components into your projects I now sell a small range on my website. The prices are competitive and the components are from a leading manufacturer. The advantage of buying the resources from me is that I am able to offer you follow up support from the context of being a textiles teacher which most other retailers aren’t able to do.  You can order online and there is a secure payment system or you can use school orders or other methods of payment. A new resource with powerpoints on how to teach this area as well as project ideas will also be available from my website soon. 

Moving schools?

Finally if you are changing schools or finishing your PGCE course don’t forget to let me have your new email address to ensure you still get all the updates and newsletters. Email me at . Feel free to pass on my details to any new colleagues if they would also like to receive the updates.

This week’s free photo download


This week’s photo is another electronic textiles one showing a coin cell holder that powers an electronic textiles circuit. This one has a slider on/off switch. It is available to buy from the website link above. 

Right hand mouse click on the image to download & save it

All images & text are the copyright of Julie Boyd & can’t be sold or reproduced in any way without permission

© Boyd Education  2012   text, images & ideas on this website are the copyright of Julie Boyd & may not be copied or reproduced without permission.. All rights Reserved.