What if a student could learn to become a professional sewing machine technician without years of imitation? To solve this problem, a detailed training course would be needed. It is a huge task.
When I graduated from college, I launched into my public school teaching career. I complete my masters degree in education, and served as a learning specialist in Maryland for several years. For over thirty years, I had to develop curriculum and lessons on many different topics as a minister. My education and experience led me to believe I could develop a quality curriculum to train technicians.
Sewing and sewing repair have been the focus of our family business for nearly twenty years. Translating experience into lessons, coursework, and practical curriculum is a doable challenge.
What content should be included in a professional educational course to teach potential technicians?
There is a vast amount of information involved in repair. To make the content understandable presentations should implement good learning theory. The course should provide instruction, application, technical support, and access to resources.
As I planned the curriculum , I wanted to provide easy to read instructional materials with many full color photos, illustrations, and charts. This led me to write my core textbook for the basic learning. I quickly discovered that sub-courses were needed to effectively breakdown the information into manageable portions. As a result, sub-courses emerged on basic sewing machines, antique sewing machines, sergers, embroidery machines, and business development. Each of these sub-coursed required its own core textbook.
Each textbook has a workbook to help the student practice good study skills including classic read, recite, and review activities. The workbook helps the student gain the basic content by reading, recite their discoveries by filling in the workbook, and reviewing the whole process.
How do people learn? Do you learn best from reading, watching, listening, or doing? To provide broad scale support for all these learning styles, this curriculum includes all of these features.
Reading, listening, even watching content presentations, I did not consider enough to assure success. I believed that practical application is also essential. With this in mind, a detailed practicum calls for the students to perform a dozen actual services and repairs on real sewing machines. The student acquires the sewing machines from various sources to give them practice. They take digital photos and submit their results for evaluation.
Evaluation is always a key concern in any course . Each sub-course has its own exam in addition to the completed workbook. A final certification assessment is also required to insure learning retention.
Reference and support resources are also an important part of the course . These make learning faster, easier, and more effective.
What does the student need to be successful as they study sewing machine repair?
Successful learning depends on many factors including: student background preparedness , receptive learning techniques, multiple presentations , doable application, and evaluation.
The student must be able to read and perform basic mechanical activities. They also need to understand the basic operations of the sewing machine. Since many would be technicians have never actually used a sewing machine; a special sub-course on the secrets of sewing is provided to the student. While this sub-course is not required, it is vital for the student to understand the use of the sewing machine before attempting to service them.
Information is presented again and again in different ways to help the student learn. Repetition helps solidify learning. The basic ideas are presented in print, pictures, audios, videos, workbook activities, practical applications, and tests.
The end result is a comprehensive curriculum with focused sub-courses to insure learning is mastered for each area of specialization. Students use their eyes, ears, heads, and hands to learn ingredients of the curriculum .
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