Irvington Middle School Eighth-Graders Build Models of Washington, D.C. Buildings

Irvington Middle School eighth-graders created proportional models of real-life buildings in Washington, D.C.

Irvington Middle School eighth-graders became ‘architects,’ creating a three-dimensional map of Washington, D.C., complete with nearly 40 proportional models of iconic buildings in the nation’s capital.

Using cardboard boxes and minimal art supplies, the students created models of such buildings as the Department of Agriculture, Department of Justice, Internal Revenue Service Building, Lincoln Memorial, U.S. Capitol, U.S. Supreme Court, Washington Monument, the White House and more.

Math teacher Gregg Pernick, leading the project with fellow math teacher Bernard Keating, said, “They use proportions to find the dimensions of their models, and also learned about various architectural styles and elements…”

Eighth-grader Malka Halliwell and her group built a model of the Department of Agriculture, scaling it down from 650 feet in length to 13.5 inches.

“…We get to use recycled materials and learn how to scale [the dimensions] so they all make sense,” said Halliwell. “You have to be very precise… you have to learn how to be patient and collaborate with your group…”

The project, funded through a grant from the Irvington Education Foundation (IEF), invited members of the educational organization ArchForKids to work with the students.

“This project always proves to be quite fun for our students, as they love the hands-on nature of it,” said Pernick, thanking the IEF, Irvington High School architecture students and art department chairperson Nina Rossi.

Finished models were brought to the gym to display a scale model of Washington, D.C.. The best models will be evaluated and they will eventually choose one to build in their city, it will made with the best materials for building.

Students will have the opportunity to visit the nation’s capital and see the buildings from April 10-12 as part of the annual eighth-grade social studies trip.

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About the Author: Evelyn Mertens