July 20th, 2019

Building for the future

By Bobinec, Greg on May 16, 2019.

Herald photo by Ian Martens
Ryan Burke, a contractor with Ashcroft Homes, helps students Katelin Conarroe, Cheena Mempin, Vanessa Rae and Maralgoo Batbayar as their group works on a bridge structure for use in drama class as part of Build Day at G.S. Lakie Middle School. @IMartensHerald

Greg Bobinec

Lethbridge Herald


A team of Grade 8 students at G.S. Lakie Middle School are working together to create a variety of projects to help benefit the school for Build Day.

The program was developed through a change by the government to meet the requirements of a new Career and Technology Foundations curriculum in the school. Back in 2017, Lakie offered the course for the first time and partnered with Ashcroft Homes, who sent five carpenters to help students to build five projects. This year, 54 students are working to design and create 13 projects for the school.

“Build Day is a chance for the students to come up with projects that they would like to make, design it and decided what materials they will need to make it, and then today we have some professionals in here helping them build all of the projects,” says Lori Adamson, teacher at G.S. Lakie Middle School.

“The skills that are emphasized in the new curriculum are mainly trades, but we also need to teach them about teamwork, co-operation, problem solving and the design process is a big focus of our program where we take them from the idea to the design, made and ready to use.”

Students broke into groups and decided which projects they wanted to tackle. During Build Day, students worked with industry partners on building picnic tables, a locking metal skateboard holder, a vertical jump tester, climbing peg board, planters, and outdoor life-sized chess pieces for a chessboard which was made last year.

Leading up to Build Day, students presented a sales pitch to the administration, with sketches and inspirational photos, as well as a short speech about why they are planning to make their project, as well as how it will benefit the school. Throughout the process, Adamson says the students have been working well to make their projects come to fruition.

“They are so engaged today, a lot of them are really tired because we had a track meet yesterday, so we were outside all day but they are very engaged in what they are doing and it is going well,” says Adamson.

“We love the program. It is a lot of work to get going but we have been very fortunate to have all of our supplies donated for the two events we have had and be able to do all of it with the help of our partners.”

Over the next few days, students will be putting the finishing touches such as sanding and painting on their projects so they can be set up and used right away by the school. During the process, students were able to learn about the different trades and technologies, developed some new skills, and were able to take their design from just an idea, to a fully realized and usable item.

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