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A Practical Addition for Schools in Ghana

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Wed, 2009-02-18 07:42

Activities:

Having measured the site, in the last lesson we introduced the idea of scale and asked the pupils to draw up the site to scale.
We began by writing a definition of scale on the board, and describing the importance of scale in producing working drawings. To help demonstrate what scale is, we drew a series of lines at various scales on the board, and used two of the plans produced in the first lesson to demonstrate how the two drawings of the same space were at very different proportions, and suggested that this could be improved through the use scaling.
We handed out a scale ruler to each pupil which we had produced on the computer, printed on card and laminated. We described how to use a scale ruler, and asked them to hold them next to their standard rulers to show that the units were the same. To describe what each scale represented we wrote a table on the board listing what each 1cm unit represented at each scale (e.g. at 1:1 1cm = 1cm, at 1:2 1cm = 2cm etc), asking the pupils to complete the sentence for each line.
To make sure that the pupils were comfortable with the rulers we asked them to complete the following questions:

Draw a line:
- 500cm long at scales 1:100 and 1:50
- 150cm long at scale 1:10
- 5000cm at 1:500

Once this was complete and we were confident the pupils understood, we drew the site on the board and asked the pupils to draw it to a scale of 1:500. We began by drawing a site boundary with overall dimensions, and asked them to find the appropriate scale to allow the site to fit on one page. Once they had done this, we asked them to begin by drawing the site boundary and then to draw in the details of the site, using the dimensions we drew on the board.

After about 45 minutes of this exercise we asked all the pupils to stop working and collected in what they had done.
In the last ten minutes of the lesson we introduced them to sustainability, writing a dictionary definition on the board, and then drawing a spider diagram outlining the key principles of sustainability, and asking them to copy it down. We then gave each group an information pack of sustainable building materials, and as homework asked each member of the group to take one of the four sections home to study before the next lesson.
Although this introduction to sustainability was very brief we wanted to present it to the pupils before the next lesson, to put it in their minds, and give them the opportunity to consider it before we develop it further next lesson.

Lesson Summary:

The pupils definitely found drawing the site plan to scale the most challenging task that we had asked them to do so far. It was the first time that we had asked them to solve the problems themselves instead of copying from the board, and we needed to spend a considerable amount of time going round the class helping them individually. However I feel that on the whole by the end of the lesson the pupils understood the principles of scale and Although not everyone finished there drawings, I think what was most important was that the pupils gained an understanding of the importance of using scale and drawing in proportion.

As well as getting the pupils to think about the design of their classroom, we have now shown them some skills that will allow them to accurately draw some of their design ideas.
Having introduced them to sustainability we are now ready to move forward and introduce them to the ideas and principles that we hope will demonstrate ways of improving there classroom, and will form the basis of their designs.

Competition Category Entered

Competition Details

  • Name: 2009 Open Architecture Challenge: Classroom
  • Host: Architecture for Humanity
  • Type: Public
  • Registration Deadline: May 4, 2009
  • Submission Deadline: June 1, 2009
  • Entry Fee: $25 USD Developed Nations , $0 USD Developing Nations
  • Award: $50,000 for the winning school for classroom construction and upgrading, and $5,000 stipend for the design team.
  • Contact: Sandhya
  • Status: Winners Announced

The competition entry ID for this project is 3672.

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