FACS Careers, FACS Engineering, FACS Image Shake Up, Family and Consumer Science Education, FCS, For the Love of FACS, In Stitches, Save FACS, STEAM in the FACS Classroom, Techno FACS, Textiles, fashion and apparel

Sew Much More STEAM!

FACS Full STEAM Ahead definition

Next-Gen Sewing: e-Fashion

Yesterday we looked at how you can add value to the content of a traditional Textiles, Apparel and Fashion curriculum by identifying areas where STEAM concepts are introduced and applied.  Today we’re venturing into new territory as we explore the topic of e-Fashion, also known as wearable electronics.

Adding a wearable electronics or e-Fashion component to you existing Textiles, Apparel and Fashion curriculum will add spark (literally and figuratively) to your sewing program.  Electronic textiles, also known as soft circuits, are electrical circuits created using flexible conductive materials (such as conductive threads and fabrics) in conjunction with discrete electronics components (such as lights, batteries, switches, and sensors).  Smart textiles are enhanced with technology that makes textiles and apparel both functional and fashionable.

Learning to design and engineer soft circuits of increasing complexity is an empowering and formative STEAM experience for students in Family and Consumer Science courses.  These activities encourage students to consider technology in a creative context, and creativity in a more technical format.  Providing students with the technical understanding necessary to complete projects utilizing soft circuits encourages creative problem-solving and design skills.

LED Shoes Cut
TwinkLED Toes Shoe Clips

To learn more about e-Fashion and STEAM, check out our TwinkLED Toes, An Introduction to Next Gen Textiles  FREE downloadable lesson on our website.  The lesson includes standards, competencies, STEAM vocabulary, Project Summary page, Project Reference Sheet, Troubleshooting guide, and student Project Sheet.  This simple and inexpensive activity makes a great introduction to the exciting new world of digital sewing.

As always, I’d love to hear from you, our FACS friends!  Have you had experience with wearable technology in your classroom?  Are you interested in learning more about e-Fashion?  We welcome your comments!

FACS Careers, FACS Engineering, FACS Image Shake Up, Family and Consumer Science Education, FCS, For the Love of FACS, Home economics, Save FACS

STEAM-Powered FACS!

I need to begin this post with an apology and an big “thank-you” to everyone who pre-ordered Cooking Up a Cool Career with STEAM or the STEAM Bundle (FACS:  Full STEAM Ahead and Cooking Up a Cool Career with STEAM).  I missed the ship date for these resources by more than one week and I’m very grateful for your patience!  (To be completely honest, I’m also very glad that the stacks of boxed orders waiting to be shipped are finally out the door and no longer taking up space in our office! LOL)  The response to our STEAM resources has been kind of amazing and we are very grateful!  I truly hope that everyone who receives a copy of one or both STEAM resources finds them useful in their FACS classroom!

STEAM books 6After more than a year of researching and writing about the application of STEAM to the FACS classroom, I am convinced that this is a pivotal moment in the future of our discipline.  Embracing the STEAM approach to classroom instruction is critical to building the image of FACS as a discipline that is current, challenging and valuable to students and communities.  Incorporating STEAM concepts and methods can help FACS move from an expendable elective to an elite component of the curriculum.

I know this change won’t happen overnight and it won’t be an easy process, but anything worth doing is always worth the effort!  The biggest obstacle we face may come from us.  As FACS teachers, like all teachers, you have so many challenges to face every day, it seems unfair to ask you to add something else to your already overflowing plate of responsibilities!  I hear you!  I’ve been there!  That’s exactly my motivation for creating resources like FACS: Full STEAM Ahead and Cooking Up a Cool Career with STEAM.  I do the researching, outlining and project development so that you can adapt and implement STEAM into your curriculum with a minimum commitment of time and effort.  It really is imperative that we adapt to this new paradigm and I’d like to help you meet the challenge.

Stay tuned to this blog, our Facebook page and our website for ideas for adding STEAM power to your FACS program.  I’m here to help!

Ramona

Be so good

 

 

FACS Careers, FACS Engineering, For the Love of FACS, Historical FACS, Home economics, National Women's History Month

Architectural Visionary

Hearst Castle has attracted thousands of visitors since opening to the public in 1958.  Although most have probably heard of William Randolph Hearst and his publishing empire, famously fictionalized in Orson Welles’s film Citizen Kane, the architect who designed his Central Coast mansion remains largely anonymous.

Julia Morgan

Julia Morgan

Julia Morgan, California’s first licensed female architect, was the design and engineering genius behind Hearst Castle as well as many other famous buildings.  Over the course of her 47-year career, Morgan designed more than 700 buildings in California alone.  Morgan, broke up the boys club of California architects and earned her status as an architectural visionary.  She didn’t just remodel kitchens or build women’s clubs, but she also built radio towers, zoos, hotels, hospitals and hundreds of private residences.

After graduating with a degree in engineering from the University of California, Berkeley, in 1894, Morgan continued her education at the world’s most prestigious architectural school, the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris.  Upon her return from Europe in 1902, Morgan began her architectural career in the San Francisco area working for the designer John Galen Howard on buildings for her alma mater.

Morgan opened her own office in San Francisco in 1904.  Her earliest commissions included a bell tower at Mills College in Oakland that withstood the San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906, landing her the commission to rebuild the severely damaged Fairmont Hotel.

Julia was given the commission to create William Randolph Hearst’s home at San Simeon, California in 1919.  It is actually a complex of domestic buildings, each eclectic in style.  The commission was a difficult one as Hearst constantly changed his mind about details related to the design, yet Morgan’s patience and resolve carried her through the project.

Julia Morgan paved the way for women in the field of architecture.  Her career is a tribute to her education, talent and distinctive personal style.