SeamLS

The Advanced Functional Fabrics Curriculum by AFFOA for teachers looking for new and inspiring options.

Advanced Functional Fabrics

What is SeamLS

AFFOA has created our very own engineering curriculum suitable for any classroom! Whether you are already teaching engineering or are looking to build it into your class for the first time, this curriculum is easy to adapt and comes with everything you need to teach an engaging, project-based mini unit. The content is split into two modules: Engineering Design (ED), a two-week module which any classroom can adopt without the need for any special materials, and Engineering Design with Prototyping (EDP) which adds one to two weeks onto the ED module to include creation of a working prototype of students’ design ideas. Advance Functional Fabrics is a technology that enables everyday clothing with new functionality for medical, military, space, and other areas. Imagine, if you will, a shirt that records video or wrist support that delivers medicine to the patient. The applications are only limited to the imagination of the designer/engineer. The SeamLS curriculum immerses high school students in an advanced textiles environment that includes engineering design, electronics, and advanced manufacturing. Students will learn how advanced fabrics are made, explore product and market applications, and complete project-based coursework that culminates in having them design and prototype new products.

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Anchored in Next Generation Science Standards, the SeamLS curriculum sits at the intersection of textiles/fashion and functional technology, two high-interest areas for students. The goal is to inspire the next generation of engineers and innovators by creating a hands-on educational experience that exposes high school students to the engineering and design process to create a prototype using advanced fabrics.

Hands On & Virtual Learning

STEAM Ready and Customizable

The SeamLS curriculum and materials are online and easily accessible and adaptable to a variety of high school STEAM programs and classroom settings. It has been designed for educators to learn first with each lesson containing an overview, step-by-step lesson plans, accompanying PowerPoint slides, videos, printable handouts, and links to suggested materials that support hands-on learning. The curriculum materials are flexible and can be integrated into existing curricula in part or whole! Use it to host a hackathon, design challenge, or problem solve with a case study.

We are working to spark innovation and modernize the textile industry by integrating traditional fabrics with advanced fibers and sensors to create the smart technology of today!

Engineering Design with Prototyping (15 Lessons)

The goal of the Electrical Design with Prototyping curriculum is to expose students to the engineering design process, and to use this process to create a prototype of a product utilizing advanced functional fabrics. This course can be completed with many different kinds of materials: e-textile engineering kits such as the LilyPad line from SparkFun, traditional Arduino components, etc. Throughout the course, students will complete the same process that AFFOA (Advanced Functional Fabrics of America), an actual engineering company, uses to design products.

Electrical Engineering

In the Electrical Engineering Curriculum, students will learn about the basic principles of electrical engineering through a variety of lessons, activities, and references. They will experience building circuits for themselves, then learn about the science behind these circuits.

Knitting Fundamentals

The AFFOA's Knitting Fundamentals Curriculum builds foundational knowledge about knitting, patterns, and yarn, then instructs students on how to use the Knit Paint software and the SHIMA SIEKI knitting machine to create original designs. This all-in-one curriculum also includes a section of student challenges using the various SHIMA SEIKI templates, as well as a section on safety protocol and additional information for using the machine.

Advanced Functional Fiber Manufacturing

In the Advanced Functional Fiber Manufacturing Curriculum students will learn a variety of shop skills and foundations, which will give them the necessary background for creating preforms. In addition to the fifteen lessons, this curriculum also includes Job Breakdown Sheets outlining general machining processes, preparing for preform draw, and drawing preforms. These can be found in the "Job Breakdown Sheets" section of the curriculum.

Blueprint Reading

Blueprint Reading teaches students how to read blueprints by focusing on each part of a blueprint individually. By learning about each component and studying many different sample blueprints, students are able to read and understand any blueprint.

Introduction to Measurement

Welcome to AFFOA's The Introduction to Measurement curriculum teaches students how to accurately measure machined pieces using three methods: machinist scales, dial calipers, and micrometers. By learning about these three devices, as well as the motivation behind accurate measurements, students are able to accurately measure any machined piece with high precision.

Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing

In AFFOA's Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing Curriculum students will learn about the definitions and symbology of a variety of GD&T concepts, including feature control frames, angularity, and maximum material condition. After completing this curriculum, students will complete a final assessment where they identify the various GD&T markings on a technical drawing.

Sample of Engineering Design with Prototyping (EDP) Course + Sample Activity


In the sample you’ll find: Lesson Plans 

  • Introduction to Engineering Design with Prototyping 
  • Engineering Design (ED) Lesson 1:  Introduction to Advanced Functional Fabrics 
  • Engineering Design (ED) Lesson 2:  Research & Product Design 
  • Engineering Design with Prototyping (EDP) Lesson 11:  Idea Development and Prototype Planning 
  • Engineering Design with Prototyping (EDP) Lesson 12:  Introduction to E-Sewing 

Check out sample lessons from Engineering Design with Prototyping, along with sample activities here. 

In the sample you’ll find: Lesson Plans 

  • Introduction to Engineering Design with Prototyping 
  • Engineering Design (ED) Lesson 1:  Introduction to Advanced Functional Fabrics 
  • Engineering Design (ED) Lesson 2:  Research & Product Design 
  • Engineering Design with Prototyping (EDP) Lesson 11:  Idea Development and Prototype Planning 
  • Engineering Design with Prototyping (EDP) Lesson 12:  Introduction to E-Sewing 

Sample Advanced Fabric Products 

  • Adaptive Heating 
  • LiFi 

Activities:  Video Walkthroughs 

  • Part 1:  Designing the Circuit 
  • Part 2:  Coding the Prototype 
  • Part 3:  Stitching & Finishing 

E-Sewing for Beginners 

  • Why SparkFun LilyPad electronics? 
  • Directions for beginner E-Sewing Project 

Liked the sample?  Unlock AFFOA’s full AFF curriculum here. 

For questions about the AFF curriculum, contact us at curriculum@affoa.org.