This lesson will allow students to reflect on their observations regarding the properties of wool and draw conclusions about the suitability of wool for a range of everyday uses and activities.
Students will have the opportunity to:
- consider the implications of wool’s unique properties and draw conclusions about its suitability in a range of everyday uses.
- take part in informal and guided discussions relating to their observations
- use drawings to represent observations and ideas and discuss their representations with others
- communicate ideas through role play and drawing.
Setting the context
Wool’s range of unique properties make it an ideal fibre for many everyday applications. Wool is soft, comfortable, safe and environmentally sound.
During this lesson and possibly through their own experience, students will see wool used in a range of contexts; for babies’ clothing and bedding, for sportswear, business and luxury wear and activewear.
The focus of this lesson is to encourage students to think about the link between the properties of a fibre and the implications for its end use.
Using the class journal, reflect with students what they now know about wool — where it comes from, how it feels, some of its hidden properties (fire and stain resistance).
Explain to students that during this lesson they are going to think about some of the ways wool can be used in everyday items of clothing and furnishings, such as curtains and bedding.
Body of lesson
- Using the Properties of wool and Different types of wool fabrics factsheets as reference guides, review with students the different properties of wool they have investigated (e.g. softness, fire resistance) and some they may not yet be aware of (e.g. breathable, renewable, biodegradable etc).
- Draw students’ attention to the Did you know? and Fun facts on the factsheets, which expand upon how these properties are applied in end products (such as sportswear).
- Show students the Sam the Lamb — Properties of wool video and discuss the concepts shown in the film with students. Ask questions such as:
- Why is wool clothing good for sportswear?
- What makes wool safe to wear?
- What makes wool comfortable to wear?
Regroup in front of the class science journal or mind map. On the right-hand page write the heading, Properties of wool. Ask students to name one property of wool they have investigated during this unit.
Ask the students the following questions:
- Where does wool come from?
- Is wool a natural or synthetic fibre?
- How does wool protect sheep?
- What does wool feel like?
- Is wool flammable?
- Could you wear wool on a rainy day?
- Why is wool good to wear in summer and winter?
Ask students to draw a picture of themselves wearing or using their favourite woollen item from the collection that has been on display during the unit of work on the properties of wool. Beside their drawing ask students to write a list of properties, from class science, that relate to why they like this particular item (e.g. soft, warm etc). Students can share their drawings with the class and explain why they chose this item.
Links to the Australian curriculum: