20 October 2017

Building materials: Green Day resource

By Anna Wexler, Education advisor, CABE | 04 February 2010

Download the free teaching resource: ‘Building materials – a collection of inspiring images’ (PowerPoint, 5.0 mb).

This PowerPoint resource is a collection of 23 images showcasing a range of different building materials in context. It is designed to be a flexible resource useful for any student from key stages 1 to 5. (Due to copyright restrictions it can only be used by non-profit making organisations, ie. schools).

Photo of a child repointing a church wall.

Child helps at St James Church, Strichley © Virginia Simpson, The Churches Conservation Trust

The images on the ‘Building materials’ PowerPoint can be used in many ways. For example, the photos could introduce younger students to the wide range of possible construction materials and their key characteristics. Alternatively, the images could highlight different types of buildings and, for example, be used to elicit emotional responses from the students.

Teaching activities: Key stages 1-4
– ask your students to sort the images into categories. Younger children could sort according to simple properties, for example shininess, older students could be encouraged to make up their own categories or consider the sustainability of the materials.

Geography – these images could be compared to buildings in your local area. Do you have similar structures? Why or why not? This discussion could be widened out to consider the relative availability of materials in different areas and how this has influenced human behaviour and construction.

History – students could consider the relative ages of the different buildings, for example, by placing the images in order of age. Alternatively you could pick a subsection of the images representing a time period students are studying and ask them to compare these to contemporary buildings.

English – display the images to your students to develop the setting for a piece of creative writing. Alternatively in groups, ask students to reach a consensus about their preferences by ordering the images based on their personal likes and dislikes. This will help practise their discussion skills.

Maths – For younger children, basic numeracy could be practised by counting and comparing the prevalence of certain features in these images, for example the number of windows on the buildings.

Green Day – a climate change event for schools
Use the ‘Building materials’ PowerPoint resource to help you deliver key activities from the free Green Day teachers’ activity kit available on CABE’s website. You will find it particularly useful to support the topic of ‘Building materials’ on page 13.

Disclaimer for images
By downloading these images you agree to abide by copyright restrictions and use them only in the course of your normal teaching. You also agree to credit the photographer of each image you use. If you want to use any of the images in a different context then permission must be sought from Engaging Places and CABE (in the first instance) and the photographers concerned, email engagingplaces@cabe.org.uk.

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