914.200.3646 info@archforkids.com

Studio Themes & Topics

Young people can explore an extensive array of topics in ArchForKids studios. Almost all themes can be adapted for a wide range of ages and grades. Most are appropriate for both formal (school-based) and informal educational settings such as libraries, afterschool programs and museums.

Participants can investigate these themes in stand-alone workshops or in a series devoted to the topic. Programs that require a series are noted below. 

In addition, ArchForKids educators can develop new workshops based on your needs, interests and curriculum.


Architecture & Design

Adventures in Architecture (series):  A fun, fast-paced introduction to the tools, strategies and work of architects. A different building activity every session, from bridges to towers to animal habitats.

Castles – Homes & Fortresses: Learn about these fascinating structures  – from their architectural details to their strategic geography, to how people lived and worked in castles. Then build your own mini castle!

Design, Build, Sit! Chair Masters Design Studio (series):  Explore the fundamentals of structure, force and resistance as participants design and construct life-size chairs — out of cardboard — capable of supporting their weight. Another option is “A Chair for a Bear”, in which students design small chairs for stuffed animals.

Dragon Dens, Fairy Cottages & Troll Bridges: Create a shelter for a mythical creature or being of your choice.

Dream House: Use your creativity to design your ideal home or apartment.

Evolution of Homes in New York State (series): Learn how shelters evolved from Native American dwellings to present-day homes. Participants will create a 3D timeline featuring residential structures of different eras.

Fun with Facades: Explore the distinctive structures of your community and learn basic architectural elements. Re-create their fronts (facades) using shapes, colors and collage techniques.

Houses from around the World (series): Learn about how people live in all of earth’s continents. Build models of vernacular architecture.

How Does Your Garden Grow?  Learn about framing, shapes and stability in architecture as you make a tabletop greenhouse. Then grow plants from seeds in the structure you created.

Make a Museum: Design your own museum. It could be an art or natural history museum, or even a museum designed to showcase your collection of beanie babies, action figures, games etc.

Rockets & Planes – Flying Architecture: Make model planes, jets, rockets and other flying machines while you investigate the principles of flight.

Scraping the Sky: Design and build your own tall tower. Learn about the math – and forces – involved in their design and construction.

Super Sports: Design a stadium or facility for YOUR favorite sport –  soccer, baseball, tennis, skateboarding and more.

Superhero Homes & Headquarters: What kind of superhero could your community use? Design his/her home taking into account the superhero’s powers and purpose.

Tree Houses – Up Up & Away: Create your own model playspace in the branches.

Fairy Home
Adventures in Architecture
Treehouse

Community Studies

All Around My Community (series): Explore the neighborhood with an architectural walk. Learn about the elements that comprise a community. Re-create the facades of local buildings.  Finally, construct 3D models of town structures and put them all together to make a community!

Fun with Facades: Explore the distinctive structures of your community and learn basic architectural elements. Re-create their fronts (facades) using shapes, colors and collage techniques.

Live Green! Make a Sustainable Village: Design and construct an entire village designed to live in harmony with the earth’s environment. Include renewable energy sources, native materials, walking & bike paths, green spaces, and much more.

Superhero Homes & Headquarters: What kind of superhero could your community use? Design his/her home taking into account the superhero’s powers and purpose.

Vacant Lot Challenge: Design a structure that would benefit your community – a recreation center, a new shop, housing, etc. Or transform the lot into a green space for your neighborhood!

Brooklyn brownstones
Harlem architecture walk
All Around My Community

Green Design & Sustainability

Green Skyscraper Challenge:  Join the global movement of green skyscraper design by constructing your own model eco-tower.

Live Green! Make a Sustainable Village: Design and construct an entire village designed to live in harmony with the earth’s environment.

Net Zero Dream House: Construct your ideal house for a particular location, taking into consideration the region’s climate and native materials.

Sustainable House & Yard: Harness the energy of the sun, wind, water and earth to power your shelter.

Rec Center Putnam Valley HS
Sustainable Design

Literacy

Going Beyond the Words: Construct an environment using a scene from a favorite book/story. Perfect for summer reading programs or to enrich a book read in class.

Math Enrichment

Bridges – From Here to There: Explore the many different types of bridges in your community and build scaled models of these amazing structures.

Classroom Antics (series): Students will create their ideal classroom, using geometric and other math concepts.

Map It! (series): Create a large scaled floor map of Washington DC. Then construct scaled models of the iconic buildings and structures to place on the map. Perfect to prepare students for a field trip to the US capital.

Scraping the Sky: Design and build your own tall tower and learn about the math – and forces – involved in their design and construction.

Beyond the Words

Structural Engineering

Bridges – From Here to There: Explore the many different types of bridges in your community and build working models of these amazing structures.

How Does Your Garden Grow?  Learn about framing, shapes and stability in architecture as you make a tabletop greenhouse. Then grow plants from seeds in the structure you created.

Let’s Make an Arch! Construct and decorate an arch bridge as you learn what makes them so strong and stable.

Scraping the Sky: Design and build your own tall tower. Explore the math – and forces – involved in their design and construction.

Super Slides: Design, build and test a mini roller coaster for marbles to ride on.

Outer Space & Video Games

Minecraft Mania: Calling all Minecraft players – build a 3D environment for their virtual world/biome.

Pokemon Homes: design a structure suitable for your favorite Pokemon character.

Space Habitats and Make a Home for Your Alien are just two of our popular intergalactic workshops.

Spacecraft design
Minecraft Mania
Dream House design

Animal Architecture

Animal Sanctuaries: Design a wildlife refuge or zoo with spaces to make our animal friends healthy and happy.

Creature Comforts – Animal Habitats: Create a home for your favorite animal based on its habits and biome.

Dino Domains:  Make the appropriate habitat for a dinosaur – from a flying Pterodactyl, to the ferocious Tyrannosaurus Rex, to a giant Sauropod.

Landscape Architecture & Urban Design

Live Green! Make a Sustainable Village: Build an entire village designed to live in harmony with the earth’s environment.

Playground Design: Create your ideal playground or adventure park. Understand the simple machines behind the equipment.

Vacant Lot Challenge: Propose a structure that would benefit your community – a recreation center, a new shop, etc. Or transform the lot into a new neighborhood green space!

Design a Waterfront Park: Design a park for a shoreline, adding landscaping, pathways, a playground, concessions and other amenities.

Forest habitat
Playground design
Amusement Park Design

Appropriate for Very Young Designers & Street Fairs

The Big Build: Free form building out of large cardboard boxes. And you can knock down your structure too!

Fun with Facades: Explore the distinctive structures of your community and learn basic architectural elements. Re-create their fronts (facades) using shapes, colors and collage techniques.

Paper Bag Play Houses: Transform a lunch bag into a beautiful home and yard.

Queens Library Discovery Day
Paper Bag House