Architecture ~ Kids’ Art Salon ~ HOMES

Kids’ Art Salon is in it’s fourth year!  To celebrate this milestone AND to pay homage to STEAM 2018, we thought we would focus on architecture.  Architecture is the perfect choice for Pasadena’s year of STEAM because it incorporates science, technology, engineering, art and math!

For our first session of the year, we covered the topic of HOMES.  Lucky for us, we had a special guest architect talk about floor plans, renderings and some of the other important things that go into designing and building a home.

Meet Dale Brown, owner of ONYX Architects in Pasadena.  If you want to know a bit more about Dale’s firm, click onto this link:  ONYX Architects. 

We always begin Kids’ Art Salon with a brief PowerPoint and then we move on to creating a work of art or, in this case, ARCHITECTURE.

Class started with a bit of a warm up!

  • When the students arrived they had to pick up a batch of strips with the names of various rooms written on them (bedroom 1, bedroom 2, bathroom, kitchen, living room & dining room).  Then they had to decide where they would place each of these rooms in the “mock” floor plan we created with blue painter’s tape.  This was their first foray into thinking like an architect.


  • Before they took their seats, they received a sealed blue envelope.  In it were photographs of three very different dwellings.  Later they would have the opportunity to match each dwelling with an environment that fit it’s structure & design best.

Take a look at the dwellings below and see if you would have been able to match them to their perfect environments.  (The kids didn’t have the answers available to them but you do!)

After some activities we explored types of homes, defined architecture, talked about architects and what they do and discussed materials.

We also covered the three important tenets of good architecture according to Vitruvius (a Roman author, architect, civil engineer & military engineer during the 1st century BC).  They are:

  1. Beauty (attractiveness)
  2. Firmness (physical strength)
  3. Utility (function)

The rest of the presentation was in the capable hands of our guest architect, Dale Brown.

The Architect Speaks (and the kids listen)…

The Project

After the learning came the making!  The children worked on a two-part project.

  • Part 1:  The Floor Plan
  • Part 1:  Build a “dream” home out of recycled materials

Everyone learned, had fun, created some terrific floor plans AND used cardboard boxes and other materials to design homes that were “out of the box”.  To get a sense of how things went, take a peek at the photos below.  You’ll see some very talented young architects at work.

Designing Floor Plans

Building Homes Out of Recycled Materials

Summer Session ~ SKYSCRAPERS

Join us in the Studio on 4th at Central Library (Wednesday, June 27 from 4-6 p.m.) for our summer session of Kids’ Art Salon!  We will cover Skyscrapers!

The children will learn how these structures are built and will get a chance to build their very own skyscraper.  Space is limited so please register by calling the Children’s Room at 626-744-4066, option 4.  Hope to see you then!


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