Section 5: Designing

“I enjoyed building a house that will benefit our lives in the future”

Pupil from Mosspits Lane Primary School


This activity sees pupils working together on their designs, using simple model making and drawing techniques.

Time required

Approximately 2 hours.

Activity 1: Making the design

Pupils should be encouraged to work in their groups to make a model of their designs. Whilst model making is optional, it is highly encouraged.

Below is a list of example materials pupils could use to make their 3D model. We recommend models are made on a cardboard base no larger than A3.

  • A4 / A3 paper and card
  • Pencils and Pens
  • Crayons and felt tips
  • Cereal boxes, shoe boxes, card, packaging
  • Scissors and rulers
  • Glue or pritt stick, masking tape, sellotape
  • Art straws, pipe cleaners, toilet roll tubes
  • Tin foil, wrapping paper, colourful paper, scrap paper, newspaper
  • Natural materials such as leaves, grass, sticks, stones

If your pupils make a model of their design, please take photographs. You will need to print and adhere a maximum of 4 photographs of the model to an A3 sheet.

If you choose not to make a model with your pupils, or a group prefers to only draw, then they should draw their ideas on 1 or 2 A3 sheet(s).

Model Making Tips

Making Walls

Below are a few examples of how pupils could structure their house if using flat pieces of cardboard.

A simple wall can be made by bending a section of cardboard, and glueing the smaller section down on to a base piece of card. With this technique you can easily make a cube shape, or something more bespoke.

A similar approach that could be utilised to reveal the inside rooms:

Making walls

Some of the designs may be over several floors. If this is the case, encourage the pupils to make their models on a flat piece of card before attaching it the the walls of their house. Then attach as below with tape. Depending on the weight of their models, you made need to add additional support columns – simply roll up some card to prop it up.

Activity 2: Explaining their design process

In addition to the sheet which shows their final design model or drawings, groups should work together to produce a maximum of 2 x A3 sheets which explain their design process and their thinking.

These sheets should focus on pulling together all the work they have done, and can be done as a collage by reusing previous activity sheets and images, or ideas redrawn on new A3 sheets.

What to include on their A3 worksheets

  • What inspired their design? Were there images they really liked?
  • Who lives in the house?
  • Where is their house?
  • What materials is the house made of?
  • How does the house make energy?
  • What is outside or on top of the house?
  • What makes the house special?
  • What makes the house ready for the future?

For further information on submitting your design, please click ‘Competition Information’

External Resources

Download resources

Go to Section 6.

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