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Student Day Workshops are for K-12 school groups interested in enriching their classroom learning through the disciplines of architecture, engineering, urban planning, and design.

Student Day Workshops will be offered virtually during school year 20-21 as one-hour live, interactive sessions led by a Center for Architecture Design Educator. Students explore the topic through inquiry-based investigations of architectural examples, as well as drawing, movement, and/or design activities. These sessions can be supplemented with a 90-minute Follow-Up Design Workshop wherein a Design Educator guides students through a hands-on project related to the Student Day theme.

Schools can supply the recommended materials or purchase kits from the Center for Architecture to distribute to students. All programs include a Resource Packet with additional information, extension activities, and links to curriculum standards 

Program cost is $200 per class (30 participants max) for a Student Day or Follow-Up Design Workshop. The fee for NYC public schools is $150 per workshop; for Title One schools the fee is $100 per workshop. Programs can be conducted on the Center for Architecture’s Zoom account or your school’s platform. 

*Special 2021 Offer: Thanks to generous support from ConEdison, our two-part Green Architecture workshops are free for Title One schools and half-price for all other schools.

Please contact Nadya Kim, School Programs Coordinator at 212-358-6127 or to begin the booking process. 


Student Day is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the New York City Council, and Con Edison.

Student Day Programs

The Language of Architecture grades K-6

K-12 Student Day, Language of Architecture, 3rd Grade. Photo: Center for Architecture.

Students learn how to “read” buildings for clues about their design and function as they observe and sketch architectural elements and different building types through an interactive slide show and virtual neighborhood walk customized to your school’s neighborhood.

Follow-Up Design Workshop: Students consider the different types of buildings in a community and design their own 2-D or 3-D neighborhood building using simple, at-home materials. An additional per student materials fee may apply.  

Skyscrapers: Structure and Strength grades K–12

K-12 Student Day, Skyscrapers, 5th Grade. Photo: Center for Architecture.

Students learn about the structural systems that support tall buildings as they are guided to analyze examples of skyscrapers from around the world. Students become familiar with key engineering concepts and structural components through discussions, demonstrations, drawing and movement activities.

Follow-Up Design Workshop: Students design and build their own model of a skyscraper’s structural frame using toothpicks, marshmallows, and spaghetti. An additional per student materials fee may apply.

Building Bridges grades 2-12

K-12 Student Day, Building Bridges, 4th Grade. Photo: Center for Architecture.

Students investigate the design and structure of four different bridge types (beam, arch, truss, and suspension) to learn how each works to support the load of traffic and span long distances. Students create labeled drawings of each bridge type, identifying structural components and forces, and gaining an understanding of key engineering concepts.

Follow-Up Design Workshop: Students construct their own working model of a suspension bridge using CFA-provided kits. $5 per student materials fee. (additional shipping costs if outside NYC.) 

Green Architecture grades 3-12

K-12 Student Day, Green Architecture, 3rd Grade. Photo: Center for Architecture.

Students learn about how buildings impact our environment through their energy and resource use and become familiar with sustainable design techniques and principles that can help us create environmentally friendly buildings.

Follow-Up Design Workshop: Students use our Environmental Design Checklist to create a model of their own green structure from recycled materials. An additional per student materials fee may apply.

Scale Model Building grades 6-12

K-12 Student Day, Scale Model Building, 7th Grade. Photo: Center for Architecture.

Students explore how scale is used in architecture to create measured drawings and architectural models, then use these tools to create their own architectural floor plans of an apartment at ½” = 1’ scale. Schools must be able to download and print scale resource materials for students.

Follow-Up Design Workshop: Students turn their 2-D floor plan into a 3-D scale model using simple at-home materials. An additional per student materials fee may apply.


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