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Brooklyn Children’s Museum

April 2011 Visit: Sustainable, Modular Building Design

Sustainable Engineering for Kids

Building Modular Structures with Kids

In April 2011, I, along with other members of Cornell University Sustainable Design (CUSD), orchestrated a weekend exhibit at the Brooklyn Children’s museum. We focused on educating the thousands of kids who came through our exhibit about modular engineering and architectural practices. In the background of the image above, you can see that we’re actually sitting inside of a large wooden/metal nodal structure, which we constructed to demonstrate the sustainable advantages of building in a modular fashion (there are more views of the structure at photo links below). Kids used marshmallows, toothpicks, and gumdrops to build modular structures on their own, while I used the opportunity to educate them about strong and weak shapes, and some sustainable design practices. The toothpick structure shown in the picture above was built entirely by the kids!

 

You can read more about the visit in my blog post, and you can check out loads of pictures on the CUSD website.

November 2011 Visit: Urban Gardening

Building Planters

Making Sustainable Urban Planters with Kids

In our second trip down to the Brooklyn Children’s museum, I worked with a team of seven other CUSD team members to teach several urban gardening classes. Since I’m no gardening expert, we assembled a diverse group of students to lead the workshops – plant science majors, electrical engineers, interior designers, and fine arts majors, to name a few. Reducing environmental impact & getting access to fresh vegetables can be tough when you live in New York City, so our workshop aimed to address this problem by repurposing plastic soda bottles into hanging gardens that kids could use to grow vegetables in. Approximately 100 kids made and took home planters – each and every one got a valuable lesson in material reuse and the importance of creative thinking when it comes to addressing global issues of living sustainably.

 

You can read more about this visit in my blog post, and you can check out loads of pictures on the CUSD website.