Codman Academy Chair Project

A math teacher at Codman Academy Charter School was interested in architecture and wanted an avenue for getting her ninth grade students to learn how to apply math to real life. The first year we had them looking at buildings but at the end of the year, they weren’t particularly inspired. The second year, the program was changed to be more general about design and to point out to them that everything in their life had to be thought out by someone. At first they didn’t get the difference in different chairs but it didn’t take long.

The program started with them being divided into smaller groups. We assigned them each a furniture designer to research. Then they had to do a power point presentation on their designer. Then, they were assigned a client. They had to interview that client about what they would want for a custom chair. They had to prepare drawings of their design and scale model for their client to review. Once the client put in additional comments and input, they refined the design and then had to build a full size chair out of cardboard and have a final presentation of the chair to the client with final feed back. They all loved it in the end and the students better understood how everything they used had to be figured out by someone.