POSTED: Friday, November 30, 2012 - 5:19pm
UPDATED: Friday, November 30, 2012 - 6:20pm
Tyler TX — For most students a class project is just another grade, but one group at Robert E. Lee High School has teamed up with local businesses for something with a lot more value. The "PLAYhouse" project kicked off in September with the hopes of raising thousands of dollars for Habitat for Humanity of Smith County.
A group of wood shop and architecture students from Robert E. Lee High School have seen their ideas built from the ground up. Deanna Harrison, Director of Development for Habitat for Humanity of Smith County, said, "This project that they did is actually a project that will impact our community for generations to come." Forty-two students spent nearly three months drawing plans and putting those plans into action.
Nick Bledsoe, Architecture teacher at Robert E. Lee, said, "They did the designs, then they did the models, they built cardboard models, and then those were brought around to the wood shop." Kolten Wiggins, a junior at Robert E. Lee, said, "Just a bigger project, meant a little bit more." Fitzpatrick Architects in Tyler designed a college-level curriculum to give the students real-life experience. Brandy Ziegler, a partner at Fitzpatrick Architects, said, "They were able to tour our office and take a look at what architects do." she said by getting involved with the younger generations she and her firm can really advocate for architecture careers. Andrew Hamilton, a junior at Robert E. Lee, said, "It's better that we see it now instead of our first year in college, that way were already ahead."
Four local contractors assisted the wood shop students throughout the building process. Garrett & Associates General Contractors, HGR General Contractors, WRL General Contractors, WRL Contractors, and RPR Construction Company, each helped out and sponsored one of the houses. Harrison said, "It was a community wide event." Austin Myles, senior at Robert E. Lee said, "It shows you working with a team completely and getting your ideas critiqued for the better."
Size was the *only guideline the students had to follow. Harrison said, "The students were challenged to be creative and think outside the box." Each playhouse has its own theme and is designed to keep kids physically active. Another senior, Ricky Ocon, said, "There was a drive to finish and do a good job, make sure everything was precise."
All of the playhouses will be auctioned off to raise money for Habitat for Humanity of Smith County. The playhouses will be on display at Fresh by Brookshire's until the silent auction ends on Monday, December 17th at 5pm. If your interested in bidding you do so at 32auctions.com/PLAYHOUSE.