Middle School CAD Teacher Using SketchUp Ideas


I am currently a middle school CAD teacher and we are using SketchUp Make in our class. It is all 3 grade levels (6,7, and 8) and I have the students for 1 quarter or 10 weeks. I have some projects already in place but I am struggling to come up with a 3rd idea that the students could do. I have been using the 3DVinci books for most of the activities and they are great. I was just wondering if there are any other teachers on here and what you do with your students. Any help is greatly appreciated.



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I teach mostly 9th and 10th graders for a class of 11 weeks, though the first 4 or so are hand drafting with T-squares and physical model making with foam core. I’ve also taught a seminar with adults through my local AIA chapter. The two groups have been quite different to teach. The adults dutifully follow along as I go through a lesson at the front of the class. The kids tend to just sit down, dive in and mess around on their own, and then need help. I don’t want to discourage that sense of exploration and curiosity, but the situation can get chaotic. I’ve made my own lesson plans over time by doing a lesson on my machine, recording the steps as screen shots and then noting them up and sharing them as multi-page pdf files with the students. They then open them either on their own phone or tablet or another window on the machine and follow along at their own pace.

One lesson I do is Photo Match, because it’s a favorite feature for me. I prep a bit for them by providing the photos and a starting massing model. Another lesson I haven’t tried yet is to have the students measure and model the classroom we’re in. Makes a nice connection between the virtual world and the real world they experience first hand.

I was thinking of making my own PDF’s and maybe I will be able to over the summer but there isn’t much time for that right now. Ideally I would love to do hand drawing and modeling but we neither have the supplies or the space for it. I am just in a computer lab. All the students want to make are buildings. I think it is because it is the easiest for them to relate to and model. I greatly appreciate the input tho

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I’d be surprised if they don’t want to make phones and other gadgets…

making scene animations is also fun…