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These downloadable architecture projects let kids build their own cities and skyscrapers

Foster + Partners wants to help children explore architecture at home

View of paper city from above. Foster + Partners

At a time when many children are stuck indoors, it can be hard to remember that the city is a place full of magic and learning opportunities. It’s not a substitute for observing the outside world, but the next best thing is bringing the outside world to them.

British architecture firm Foster + Partners recently launched an initiative called #architecturefromhome, a series of free downloadable activities that hopes to share the whimsy and wonder of the built environment with screen-bound kids.

“The main aim has been to get them to ask questions about their surroundings and start thinking about their built environment,” Katy Harris, a senior partner at Foster + Partners told Dezeen. “For instance, the photo story activity teaches children about scale and prompts them to think differently about space and buildings.”

Worksheet showing paper skyscraper template. Foster + Partners

The task in question asks children to take photos and think about concepts like “framing,” “depth of field,” and “vantage point.” A little advanced for, say, a three year old, but there are other activities that are easier to follow. A couple of them employ cut and paste techniques that allow kids to create their own paper city and skyscraper.

Online architectural learning initiatives are no substitute for getting out and experiencing the real thing, but at the very least, we might end social distancing with a whole new generation of architectural aficionados.

Worksheet showing coloring book page. Foster + Partners
Worksheet showing paper skyscraper template. Foster + Partners