K-12 Program Seeks To Help Students Learn Architecture

The Paradise Valley Unified School District (PVUSD) Community Education Department is partnering with the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation to offer a new afterschool program in something that’s most certainly not offered in schools right now: architecture.

This six-week afterschool pilot program will be held in 25 participating schools and seek to engage students in hands-on experience using the teachings of Frank Lloyd Wright’s work. The iconic architect’s foundation wants to partner with schools to teach students the different facets of architecture, such as the use of glass, color, and shapes. But more than that, they want to help kids make the connection between certain aspects like using glass, and how Wright used it to connect the indoors and outdoors, as well as how he used art in his architectural designs by incorporating things like stained glass and mirroring the colors of his surroundings.

The new after school initiative will feature a lesson every week, with each week focusing on a different aspect of Wright’s architectural values. The lesson will feature a video by a member of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation team, explaining the connection between the principle and how to apply it to the design and creation of the architect’s own home in Scottsdale, Arizona.

The program will begin in the fall for students in second through fifth grade, and is designed to emphasis the current push for STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) curriculum which is being taught in classrooms today. The curriculum seeks to offer less structure and allow more creative freedom for students. The entire program will have students creating their own stained glass projects with the idea that they will be encouraged to apply each of the concepts they learn in the six-week program in the real world.

Once this pilot program ends, the organizations will meet to assess the effectiveness of the program, and what to refine to build a bigger, more robust program. The end goal is to see this program be set up all over the country. Training for the teachers involved in the program will begin on September 12th

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