Starting in 2006, we began inviting local third grade classes into our office for a hands-on look at what it’s like to be an architect. What began through a personal relationship with a teacher at San Francisco’s Town School for boys, expanded to include third graders from the Katherine Del Mar Burke School for girls and the Malcom X Academy. By giving these children from three very different schools a glimpse into the world of architecture, we hope to encourage them to dream about architecture as a profession.
We don’t just show them what we do. We have them do it themselves. For a whole morning, they are the architects, working with our mentors to design their own private dream houses.
We make it fun – giving them sites ranging from a private island to a tree-house to spark their imagination. Using custom-designed templates, they create their own spaces, learning about scale, area and perimeter in the process.
We don’t stop there…while the children work on their dream houses, one of our designers works on the same project – in the same time one-hour time frame. At the end of the hour, our in-house designer presents his design, teaching the children about solving problems, creating sustainable solutions and dreaming big.