Skyscrapers and towers are amazing architectural feats that are found and recognized all over the world. But what if we gave students the chance to design their own skyscraper from the ground up? Imagine what student could create!
Build A Skyscraper
is a multi-tiered project based learning activity that asks students to build their own skyscraper.
The objective of this project is for students to create and design their own skyscraper. Students will apply a variety of academic concepts and use problem solving skills (including design, creativity, imagination, research, and collaboration) to build it. They will develop 3D versions of a this building with moveable pieces that can be combined to other students’ work (if they so choose).
This project based learning activity can be completed in a variety of ways and allows for differentiation amongst varying levels of students. It is highly adaptable and can be completed all at once OR the teacher can choose portions of the resource to complete.
This resource is designed for ALL STUDENTS to use and work through at a pace where they will be successful. There are steps and procedures to assist students for each section. As students work through each page, they will make their own decisions and choose the outcomes based on information they learn. By the end of this project each student will have created an original building based on their own ideas, imagination, and application of skills.
5 About this Resource, Instructions, and Components
11 Section one: Introduction
12 Brain Storm:
Students brainstorm what they know about high rises, buildings, and skyscrapers.
This can be completed individually or collaboratively.
13 Structured Vocabulary:
Student will WRITE or ILLUSTRATE definitions for 24 vocabulary words relating to building buildings.
16 Constructive Thinking:
Students will answer open ended questions about buildings. Questions include why builders want them, how they impact the environment, and questioning if they are essential.
18 Around the World: Students must identify and sketch skyscrapers from around the world.
SECTION TWO: Building SKYSCRAPERS
19 Building Plans:
This is a single page checklist students should follow.
-This page includes 5 steps for ONLY building the skyscraper.
20 How to Build:
Two pages of instructions for students to follow for building.
22 Up to Code: Students design each individual floor their building.
Included are NINE separate pages of building sheets. Students or teachers can pick the ones they’d like to use.
33 MEGA FLOORS:
Students can create 15x8 floor levels (twice the height of the previous floors).
36 Rooftops and More:
Designers create their own style of rooftops to finish off the buildings.
38 3D Items:
Instructional page and three additional graph pages for designers to build three dimensional materials to go on, in, off, or around their skyscraper.
SECTION THREE: Additional Activities
43 Floor Pricing:
Find the cost of each floor, based on materials used. Includes two pricing versions (with double-digit multiplication and addition) and two different sized answer sheets.
47 Hight Volume: Find the volume of each floor of the building.
-Included are three different sheets where the cubes are one, three, and five units in length, width, and height.
Write an article detailing the newest skyscraper in the city.
51 On the Market:
Complete a realtor listing of an available floor in the skyscraper.
Write and illustrate 3-6 essential parts of the building that should be highlighted.
54 Tourist Attraction:
Create a tourist attraction that will be towards the top of the building.
Design, illustrate, and label how it works.
55 Comic Book:
Create a story for the skyscraper as a comic book.
61 Student Reflection Sheet
62 Teacher Rubrics, two versions included.
64 SECTIOn Five: Examples
Photos of how-to build the skyscrapers and examples of different ideas that students could include.
The measurement used for this project will be a units per cube.
You may choose to increase complexity by making each cube worth more.
There are NO customary or metric measurements.
-card stock (optional for the
-crayons and colored pencils
-tape and glue
The time frame for completing this project will vary greatly. If you are planning to complete it in a week, give 45-60 minutes per day or longer. All students will work at different rates, but by the end of the week students should be finishing the required steps or trying some of the additional tasks.
-Time can vary based on many factors.
--This PBL focuses on pushing students to explore, create, design, and research a decade while applying problem solving techniques and collaborating with others. It allows for easy differentiation, so students can work at a pace they will be successful at. There are steps and procedures to assist students through this project, but the work and results will be determined by their ideas that each students adds.
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