Construct a model house - middle years
One of the projects is to work as part of a team to construct a model house. You can choose your own design and materials but the model house is to be no bigger than 100cm and no smaller than 40cm. The house could include lighting, windows, a weatherproof roof, gutters, a rainwater tank or insulation.
To begin, here is some interesting information about houses.
The earliest dwellings were probably caves, where people would take shelter from the weather. The construction styles of early dwellings or houses would have depended upon many factors, including the materials that were available, the tools with which they could be cut or shaped, the climate and the lifestyle of the people.
Early alternatives to caves would have been shelters made of sticks and bark, and tents made of animal hides, with timber frames.
The earliest recorded houses seem to date from around 10,000 BC, in what is now Egypt and western Asia. In Greece, houses are recorded from around 6,000 BC, and in England from around 3,000 BC. These were often 'hearth' houses made of stone or mud bricks, with a thatched roof and a single fireplace ('hearth') in the middle. There were no chimneys, as they had not been invented then. The people would have shared their homes, particularly in cold weather, with their cattle and other domesticated animals, so life in these houses was fairly crowded!
Later came 'courtyard houses', where the animals were kept in a central courtyard surrounded by dwellings. The invention of chimneys would also have improved the quality of life.
Much bigger and better houses were built in Roman times (around 300 BC to 400 AD). These often included the plumbing of water. Subsequently, in Europe, great castles were built for the ruling classes, whilst poorer people were relegated to much more humble hearth dwellings.
More recently, the styles of houses have reflected the fashions of the time, as well as available technologies and materials. There are many recognisable styles such as Elizabethan, Georgian, Edwardian, Art Deco and Tuscan, to name but a few.
In other cultures, the lifestyle and the locally-available materials have determined the types and styles of houses. Dwellings in well-timbered areas commonly used wood, whilst those in timber-poor areas tended to be made of stone or brick. Coconut thatching is used in the Pacific Islands, Eskimos used ice to make igloos, and nomadic Middle Eastern peoples used animal hides to make tents.
If you would like to construct a model house as an EngQuest project, why not ask your teacher?