Building blocks of education: Academy-style teams show off designs for new schools

A team, made up of Madison Hiatte, near, Madeline Mitchell and Mikayla Thomas, explain their ideas to Simonsen Ninth Grade Center counselors, Jamie Marshall, left, Carrie Phillips and Tim Ritter. The students wanted to create a multi-level building for their academy. Their idea even had a round cafeteria with the banks of lockers encircling the lunchroom.

A team, made up of Madison Hiatte, near, Madeline Mitchell and Mikayla Thomas, explain their ideas to Simonsen Ninth Grade Center counselors, Jamie Marshall, left, Carrie Phillips and Tim Ritter. The students wanted to create a multi-level building for their academy. Their idea even had a round cafeteria with the banks of lockers encircling the lunchroom.

There’s an old saying in the construction industry: “Measure twice, cut once.”

For a team of seventh-grade boys at Lewis and Clark Middle School, the old adage proved to be apt. Tasked with the challenge of designing a blueprint and scale model for a new high school academy, their first effort floundered.

Every five centimeters of blueprint space was intended to be five meters of actual school space, but something wasn’t quite working.

“The numbers didn’t add up,” said Zac Branson, a student in the school’s Math and Science for the 21st Century class. “We had to ....

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