~North Carolina high school students in drafting class challenged to design a school bus conversion.~
Interview By: Brock Butterfield ~
Instructor: Todd Matthews ~
I opened an email in my inbox recently that both surprised and intrigued me. Topsail High School teacher Todd Matthews sent me an email explaining how he had tasked his students with designing a skoolie for their family as the final project for his Drafting I class. He asked if I had some time to do a Google Hangout the students that had some questions from an "expert". We organized a time and I spent just time with his two classes to answers some questions they had in regards to building a skoolie. At one moment when we were talking about the layout I asked how many of them had taken into account for the wheel wells of the bus of which no one raised their hand. A mistake I had also made in my first drafts and layout of my first school bus conversion.
After the video call I spoke with Todd and asked if I could write an article on the students and the class curriculum. The fact that high school students are now being given the challenge to look at tiny living as a way of the future made me realize that one day it may not be a fun challenge but yet, a reality.
Topsail High School Teacher Todd Matthews shows the students the Bus Life Adventure website to give them an idea of what they're going to be designing.
"Wave to the camera kids! I wanna take a screenshot!"
I was curious more about the class and how Todd had come up with the idea so I composed some questions and shot them his way.
How did the idea come about to have your students design a skoolie layout?
I came up with the idea from my love and experience of traveling. Also I use a final design project to assess the students by giving them a hands on project that will encompass the full curriculum/class.
What criteria did they have to follow?
Final Design Project Drafting I Skoolie Design
Design a Skoolie (Converted School Bus to RV) that will fit your family. It needs to have the following:
- Bed/Sleeping area for each person.
- Kitchen area with sink and cooktop/oven
- How will you have electricity? (Solar/Generator)
- Bathroom with toilet and shower/tub
- Laundry Washer/Dryer
- Living room area/Gathering area/Dining area
- Walls need to be 2” thick
- Brainstorming Ideas/questions? Full Page = 20 pts.
- Research notes with website URL’s (Wikipedia not allowed) 4 websites and full page of notes = 20 pts.
- Sketches with explanation notes. 1. Sketch Isometric/Oblique/Perspective 2. Multiview = 25 pts.
- Engineered blueprints with Title Block, Border, Dimensions, Multiview, and notes. = 35 pts.
What obstacles did they encounter in their designs?
Students use drafting software to layout school bus conversions.
What was the most creative use of space that a student demonstrated?
One students school bus conversion layout concept.
Another creative use of space and layout for a school bus conversion.