Wouldn't it be cool to have a teched-out house like the Jetsons? Imagine having built-in gizmos that wash your face and brush your hair and teeth for you, closets that dress you, moving hallways and gigantic TV walls, pop-up furniture, talking appliances, and don't forget the live-in robotic maid--now that's a house! Too bad that old cartoon was just fun future fiction ... or was it? Try out some of these techno tips and open the door to a whole new way of teched-out living!
Remember that avocado green linoleum? Don't laugh, that was the latest in high-tech flooring way back when ... Home fashions change over the years--and so does the home technology. Have your students interview their parents and grandparents to find out what kind of home technology they remember from childhood. Have them list their findings in categories such as heat, structure and materials, flooring, appliances, communication, food storage, cleaning, or comfort. Use the interview information and class discussion to create a comparison chart:
They can also try an interactive tour through home-tech history.
Discuss your students' ideas for the FUTURE of home tech. Have them do some research and then design and construct their own Future Home using diagrammed drawings or a simple 2D or 3D CAD design. Another option--explore the use of "Green Tech" in soil-block home construction. Then design a visual Lego[TM] block house online, print out, then build with Legos[TM].
* Lego Digital Designer--
* Future home sites--
* Free CAD programs--
What step comes between home design and construction? The blueprints! Have your students trace their future home designs onto a scaled grid and label parts with measurements. Older students can figure the measurements for the perimeter and area of their designs. If their construction math is a little rusty, have them work with an online simulation that guides them through basic to intermediate geometry and measurement while they use blueprints to construct a predesigned structure. As an extension, print out the blueprints and build the structure out of tag board.
* Geometry guide--