Fibres and Fabrics was one of the four topics that featured as a separate area of study in the Nuffield Home Economics course for students aged 14–16. The aim was to allow students to learn textile science in a way that would be useful to them in everyday life.
The emphasis in the course was on learning about the industrial processes involved in the manufacture of fabrics, and how these could affect the clothes that people buy and wear. Students were encouraged to consider the reasons why fabrics are made the way they are for different purposes. This included reflection on the relative importance of different criteria - aesthetics, performance, and price – when choosing to buy clothes.
The Students’ Book and Teachers’ Guide were supplemented by a pack of photocopiable worksheets and assessment card masters. The worksheets provide supplementary activities and information related to the text.
The assessment cards offer the teacher a variety of tests and projects for each chapter and help towards effective assessment of students' performance. They were designed to be flexible in use and were intended for display on an overhead projector or to be duplicated either in part or in their entirety for a written test. The questions are varied and include objective questions, structured questions, and questions using mathematics. Each card includes suggestions for projects or course work investigations. Many of the questions have no one right answer.
Chapter 1. Going shopping
Chapter 2. The clothes line
Chapter 3. Why textiles - why not plastics?
Chapter 4. Fibres: the first step in the line
Chapter 5. Producing the natural fibres
Chapter 6. Man imitates nature
Chapter 7. Comparing the fibres
Chapter 8. Building up to a yarn
Chapter 9. Building up to a fabric
Chapter 10. Colour
Chapter 11. Putting colour into practice
Chapter 12. It's all in the finish
Chapter 13. The garment takes shape
Chapter 14. Getting dirty
Chapter 15. Keep it clean
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