In this unit, students will undertake a preliminary study
of architecture: reading about philosophies underlying the pursuit of
architecture and comparing different architectural styles. Although architecture
is obviously a very complex discipline that cannot be mastered in one lesson,
this preliminary study will provide some context for subsequent activities
involving architectural visualization. With these activities, students will have
an opportunity to see how architects can use current technological capabilities,
both hardware and software, to "visualize" buildings and other structures before
they actually construct them. Students will speculate about the types of
buildings and structures that might be needed in the future, and will try their
hands at drawing some of these.
In developing our lessons and activities, we made some assumptions about the hardware and
software that would be available in the classroom for teachers who visit the LETSNet Website.
We assume that teachers using our Internet-based lessons or activities have a computer with
the necessary hardware components (mouse, keyboard, and monitor) as well as a World Wide
Web browser. In the section below, we specify any "special" hardware or software
requirements for a lesson or activity (in addition to those described above) and the level of
Internet access required to do the activity.
Architecture is a truly interdisciplinary field, drawing
upon art, history, mathematics, physics, engineering, and archaeology, to name a
few subjects. Although the Introduction to Architectural Visualization unit does not cover all
of these fields, it does address the guidelines enumerated in some national standards projects.
One Computer versus Many
The plans for this unit are tailored to fit teaching situations where students have access to several computers with an Internet connection. To accommodate classrooms that do not have access to a computer lab with full Internet connections, students can work in research groups to explore Internet sites and conduct their research.
If you have only one computer with Internet access, you may choose to do one of the following: