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Seventh graders design ‘dream houses’ with Legos

Image of Middle School Students with custom built lego houses

Seventh graders Britt Cumberland and Collin Hall enjoyed designing their “dream” house as part of their math studies at Neshoba Central Middle School.

By Debbie Burt Myers

Seventh graders at Neshoba Central Middle School highlighted their creativity by utilizing over 10,000 Legos to design their own dream houses, complete with such things as bunkers, a secret gaming room, a library, a swimming pool and even a “fight” room.

Instructor Tonya Hancock said the project focused on teaching scale factor, marking the third year of Lego designs for her students.

Last year, students did a similar house project while the previous year included a replica of several elementary school buildings.

Thirty two-student teams sketched their designs on graph paper before bringing them to fruition with Legos.

 “They could put anything in their house that they wanted,” Hancock said. 

The teams’ work was so detailed that a skilled contractor could build the houses, she said.

“It doesn’t have where the plumbing and electrical work goes, but a good contractor could build from this,” she said.

After determining the scale factor, students calculated square footage and building cost, with some estimating construction costs nearing $500,000.

 They had to find a scale factor that worked for the 32-by-32 stud Lego platform.

“We estimated the cost per square foot with information we found on Google,” Hancock said.

Students presented the houses to pre-kindergarten and fourth-grade classes. Superintendent Josh Perkins and members of the School Board visited the classroom to observe the students at work.

Students said it was fun to display their projects, noting that some of the pre-k students wanted to play with the Legos.

Student Kadyn Boatman cited the teamwork aspect of the project.

 “I learned how to do base-times-height and how to calculate the perimeter.  I had fun. We learned a lot about scale factor.”

Students Collin Hall and Britt Cumberland were partners.

Hall found building the walls interesting. He said converting large numbers to smaller numbers on a Lego platform was a learning experience.

Cumberland said they designed multiple rooms in their house.

“We had a trophy room for trophy deer and sports trophies. We also had big walk-in closets. It was a fun project to do. It was a hands-on project.”

Pre-K student Hamp Stribling was inspired by the Lego project.

“I’m going to build my own house with my Legos at home,” he said.

Each team’s project underwent a peer review, adding to the learning experience.

Hancock said the teams “worked four solid days on the project and then pockets of additional time as they finished up other assignments.”