The 27 upperclass students in the design course at St. Elizabeth High School have of course learned a lot about design over this school year.
And thanks to a lengthy interdisciplinary project involving trendy tiny houses, they have learned about statistics and environmental science as well.
“I’m always trying to have students see the relevance of art education,” said project creator Jen Mrozek. “Art is not just about drawing and surfaces. It’s about creativity and being a human being.”
Mrozek, who has taught art at the Wilmington, Delaware school for three years, involved statistics teacher John Tomaszewski and environmental science teacher Julia Downs. She placed the project’s roots in architecture, an artistic discipline that she noted is “based on reality.”
She broke down the class into five groups, and for CEOs for each group, she selected seniors who excelled in design and leadership. She gave them some parameters, such as location (Cape Cod, Colorado, Oregon, Vermont and Washington), and sent them to magazines to find photos of clients with different needs and interests. The resulting scenarios included outdoorsy young newlyweds living off an inheritance, a hipster who wants a tree growing out of his roof and an elderly rich man.
“The kids who went further into the backstories did more with their projects,” Mrozek noted.