Student models wearable technologyThe Wearable Technologies Club at Troy Middle School is combining the science of electricity with fashion fun.

Part of the 21st Century After-school Program, the club explores technologies for building circuits that can be worn. Students use soft materials like conductive fabrics and thread, as well as more traditional electronic components.

Students completed three different wearable design projects. They used fabric “buttons” using conductive fabric to turn on LED lights. They designed sewable circuits using conductive thread and lights to create festive winter clothes and backpacks. Students are currently learning how to incorporate sensors using a photocell (light sensor), and other electronic components. During the next session, students still start to explore creative applications of motors.

Students worked with Kathleen McDermont, a doctoral student in Electronic Arts at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute to create wearable technologies and to foster an interest in technology.

“While learning to use the technology is important, creative design is even more so as we critically consider the various potentials for wearable technologies and how they might develop in the future,” said McDermont.

Student models backpack with sewn in LED lights