Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Designing Skyscrapers

Tall buildings and modern designs are fascinating aspects of architecture and engineering, so it is no surprise that students love the idea of learning more about these as they take the role of a designer.  Studying existing buildings, learning about how they are designed to withstand natural disasters while still being aesthetically pleasing, is our starting point for the unit.  As a part of this, students choose a skyscraper of interest to research and then replicate its design using Sketchup (CAD), a free download, to create a scale model.

Empire State Building
Our next lesson lets them use what they've learned to design their own skyscraper, again to scale in Sketchup.  I love seeing the creative ideas they have!

Finally, using a budget and a limited amount of time (just like real engineers!), teams construct a skyscraper together.  The finished product needed to be to scale, and able to withstand both wind and earthquake!

If you'd like to use this lesson with your class, you can obtain the full lesson plan here.

No comments:

Post a Comment