Thursday, June 5, 2014

Architects and Engineers For The Day

Dreaming big and overcoming obstacles are the consistent themes that weave themselves through David Robert's, Iggy Peck Architect and Rosie Revere Engineer. Both of these books remind the reader that building taller and brainstorming without limitation can create beautiful and inventive projects.

For Iggy Peck, his affinity for building came at a young age. When he was only in diapers, he built towers from diapers (dirty ones, to his mother’s total dismay). He piled pancakes, and made castles from chalk. His parents were proud, but upon entering second grade, his teacher, Miss Lila Greer, had other ideas. At the age of eight, she was lost on a field trip in a skyscraper, and found herself stuck in an elevator with a circus troupe. Since that day, she made sure that there would be no building, and definitely not in her classroom. Iggy, saddened by this news, gives up his passion.

That is, until the day that the class heads over a bridge for a field trip. At the last moment, the bridge collapses, and Miss Lila Greer, too, collapses to the ground. While unconscious, Iggy orchestrates a plan to build a bridge from shoestrings, a pair of underpants, and fruit roll ups. When the teacher finally wakes up, she is delighted to see what Iggy has done, and it changes her perspective. From then on, Iggy is welcome to build in her classroom and goes on to become a successful and innovative architect.

Miss Lila Greer travels the bridge that Iggy designed. She imagines it to be the Golden
 Gate Bridge. The children were particularly excited to see a local landmark!

Rosie Revere is also in Miss Lila Greet and Iggy’s classroom, and has a knack for building elaborate and quirky inventions. She engineers them by night in her attic, making sure that they are hidden away by the time morning comes.

Rosie builds by night. 

When her great-great-aunt comes to visit, and Rosie hears that her dream is to fly, Rosie gets busy. She brilliantly engineers a flying device for her aunt. When the day comes to fly it, it falls after a short bit in the air. Rosie is devastated, but her Aunt laughs with excitement. She then assures Rosie that you only fail when you give up. That this attempt is just the beginning of something great!

We decided to be engineers and architects for the day, with an open-ended goal to create. I intentionally left this project open to interpretation to create space for any kind of structure.

 A final creation.

A girl elaborates on her structure. Their is a town at one end that leads to a body of water that is filled with sharks. There is a device that you can climb into that attaches to a rope that brings you to safety. After crossing a bridge made of straws, there is a playground with a sandbox, climbing tube, and a resting space. The resting space will fix any ailment in "just two minutes and then you have to rest on the feather bed," There is also a trampoline that will take you to a tall yellow feathers where you can learn about all of the "magic from Asia," which is where the fairies live and keep their magic. 

A boy works to maneuver a piece of thread into a straw.

His invention aims to move feathers at the end of a straw when it is blown into. The angling of the straw had to be just right to move all of the feathers, and required many attempts and adjustments.

A girl explains that when you are stuck on the rock (button) there is a component that opens up with a voice that says, “You are okay and safe. It will be okay,” and then moves you to safety. She specifically noted that if you are not yet married, the voice will be of the person that you will fall in love with and marry after you are safe. 

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