Media Advisory: Elementary Students Solve Architectural Problems, Demonstrate Design, Construction, Testing of Bridges as Part of Buffalo Architecture + Education Program

Release Date: December 14, 2011

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- On Friday, Dec. 16, members of the media are invited to view two in-school projects conducted this semester through the 10-year-old Buffalo Architecture Foundation's Architecture + Education program.

The program teams graduate students from the University at Buffalo School of Architecture and Planning, working architects and elementary school teachers, who together conduct 10-week architectural projects in the Buffalo public schools.

The program teaches students about the kind of work architects do and how they work collaboratively to accomplish projects, as well as the way architects think and the kind of training and education they need. Students also work on one or more architectural projects in the classroom.

Details on all the fall, 2011 projects can be found at

The media is invited to see two of the school projects. The students' parents have all signed film/photo clearances.

-- 8:30-10 a.m.: First and third grade students at the Buffalo Public Schools' Discovery School, 911 Abbott Rd., Buffalo: "Sun Shades" and other projects. The students are creating architectural sun shades for windows using patterned blocks. Their first solutions blocked the light instead of shading it. They then decided to use 3D shapes to shade light coming in through window frames and solve the problem.

Members of the media are asked to enter the school through the back door off the parking lot and press the buzzer to be admitted. They then should report to the main office.

The students worked on this project with teachers Stephanie Hall and Kristen Gabriel.

-- 2 p.m.: Project by fifth grade students at the Buffalo Public Schools' Community School 53, 425 South Park Ave., Buffalo: "Building Bridges." Students learned and then applied architectural principles as well as math and science skills to the design, construction and stability testing of 15 bridges, including a large bridge, developed and constructed by the entire class.

Press should go to the school's front door near parking lot, ring the buzzer and sign in at the main office. You will be directed to Classroom 13M.

The school's fifth graders have been working with teacher Robert Hunter, UB architecture student Justina Zifchock (ZIF-chock).

Media Contact Information

Patricia Donovan has retired from University Communications. To contact UB's media relations staff, call 716-645-6969 or visit our list of current university media contacts. Sorry for the inconvenience.