Fifth Graders Build a Home

By Taylor Barnhill  - bio | e-mail | Twitter

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - How many of you can say you've helped build a house? And how many of you built a house at eleven years old? Students at a Downtown Elementary School did just that and News Leader Nine caught up with the fifth graders that hammered out their own home.

It may just look like a pile of supplies, but these fifth grade students plan on creating a scaled-down house.

David Rock is the Dean of the College of Education at Columbus State University. He told News Leader Nine, "They'll actually build the house using hammers, power drills, screws. They're going to build a house just like you would outside this building."

The building lesson includes math skills and stresses the importance of teamwork and education.

The founder of the program "If I Had a Hammer" is Perry Wilson. He traveled from Franklin, Tennessee to teach the lesson. "Even kids that make straight A's don't really know how to apply mathematics. So this is trying to bring the real world into the classroom," said Wilson.

"It's fun because it teaches you so much about math and construction and it gives you experience to work with power tools," explained fifth grade student, Kapatrick Rogers. The students get to try something completely new. Kapatrick said, "We're hammering and drilling and I already have splinters."

And they get to create something from scratch. Jazlinn Williams is also a fifth grader at Downtown Elementary School. She said, "It was nothing at first except the floor and now it looks like a real house!"

Wilson started the idea after struggling with math as a child and is glad to bring the event to Columbus, "We've worked with half a million kids nationally and I've never done this without kids loving it. But the most important part for them is making the connection that what they're doing in school actually connects to something."

After building, the students will continue the lesson by designing and making miniature models of homes. As for the house they created Thursday, it was taken down and will be used with other students across the country.