Bend area elementary school students will showcase projects developed over the past few months during time spent with architects learning about architecture. This school year, eleven classes and nine volunteer architects from Central Oregon participated in the Architects in Schools program. Schools participating are Amity Creek Magnet School, Buckingham Elementary, Elk Meadow Elementary, Ensworth Elementary, Friday School Coop and Ponderosa Elementary from Bend, and Tumalo Community School from Tumalo. Participating architects represent Neal Huston and Associates, BBT Architects, BLRB Architects, Hara Shick Architects, Pinnacle Architecture and Blaise Cacciola Architect, LLC.
The Architects in Schools program serves third through fifth grades and is administered by the Architecture Foundation of Oregon. It has existed in the Portland area for over 30 years with a recent expansion to other areas of the state, including Central Oregon. The program is designed to develop an awareness of architectural elements and construction methods through classroom sessions, projects and field trips that enhance learning in language arts, social studies, math, science and other subjects. The content is guided by an architectural curriculum specially prepared to create understanding and appreciation of the built environment in which the students live, learn and play.
Participating students reported that “… you can’t build a building without drawing and (that) some buildings look really hard to draw, but I can do it.” And, “You can’t just build, you have to draw first. You have to think about who the building is for.” Students also learn important communication skills. One student said, “We learned that it is not easy to be an architect, client or a contractor because you have to work with the information that the client gave to the architect who gave it to the contractor.”
Final projects from the students’ six-week program will be on display at The Old Mill, 330 SW Powerhouse Dr., at a reception on First Friday, May 4 from 5-8pm. Many of the pieces will continue to be on exhibit through the remainder of the month of May.
For more information about the Architects in Schools program please contact the Architecture Foundation of Oregon at 503-542-3825 or Kim Ruthardt Knowles at 503-317-7537.