Adventures in Architecture for Kids: 30 Design Projects for STEAM Discovery and Learning
– Vicky Chan –
Published 21 December 2021
Adventures in Architecture for Kids is a brightly coloured and attention-grabbing non fiction book with heaps of hands-on activity ideas.
The book is divided into five sections: General Construction, Architecture and History, Landscape Architecture, Sustainable Architecture, and a Brief Introduction to City Planning. Each section then has between three and eight projects to make that step you through an aspect of architecture. Examples of projects include building a 3D model of a house using pasta, designing a treehouse model and building with indigenous construction methods. Each project has multiple pages of photographs demonstrating the materials needed, step-by-step construction and the finished product. While each project can be followed exactly, once that has been created, readers can use the same techniques to create their own designs.
Library Design Resources
I am extremely excited that my new school is building a new school library in the next few years. While I have entered at a time when first designs have already been created and the general idea of the space is already known, there is a long road ahead as we finalise the library design and what the space will look like. I’d like to document this journey on my website.
Following librarians on networks and social media, there seems to be a wonderful trend of school libraries being renovated or redesigned. Hopefully this is a sign that school libraries and their staff are being valued by their school leadership and communities.
I needed a place to start collecting the library design ideas and research I was finding. I’m putting it here in a hope it might be helpful for others as well. Continue reading
If I Built A School – Chris Van Dusen – If I Built #3 – Dial Books – Published 13 August 2019
If Jack built a school, there would be hover desks and pop-up textbooks, skydiving wind tunnels and a trampoline basketball court in the gym, a robo-chef to serve lunch in the cafeteria, field trips to Mars, and a whole lot more. The inventive boy who described his ideal car and house in previous books is dreaming even bigger this time.
If I Built A School is Chris Van Dusen’s third If I Built… picture book. Brilliantly coloured spreads full of wonderful imaginings provide the perfect leaping off point to spark children’s own creativity. If I Built A School is more like If I Built a fun park. From glass tube travel ports and spaceships to holograms and water slides, Jack’s school design is wild and heaps of fun.
While the inclusions in Jack’s school are perhaps not exactly surprising, it is the leap of creativity and the passing of design over to the child that I really like. As Jack tours his teacher around the school, introducing her to his plans and reasoning behind them, even sometimes admitting that he doesn’t yet have all the details on how something might actually work, it is the creativity that is passed into his hands and his teacher’s looks of wonder that I most appreciate (especially her considered look at the existing brick school box at the close of the book).
There is so much that one could do with children after reading this book. Having children design their own school is just one simple activity. Working with DIY holograms is an easy tech-related activity, while in-depth discussion, for example, about Jack’s decision to have animals sequestered into small enclosures just inside the entrance of his school could spark much-needed conversation about the relationship between animals and humans.