Fifth Graders Make Paper Houses and The Future of Education

Seh Hui Leong


Enough whining about how our education system is not preparing kids into the real world, the following short video from The Seattle Times shows a glimpse of the future of education:

[Source: Fifth Graders Make Paper Houses from The Seattle Times]

In this video, Joe Bailey-Fogarty, a fifth-grade teacher at Frantz H. Coe Elementary school, talks about a week-long project to build houses out of newspaper and masking tape. This video really strikes me with absolute brilliance when he explains how the project works: students need to take out loans to buy building materials, draw architectural plans, work together to build the house and keep the accounting paperwork in order.

It get even more interesting when at the end of the project, students are able to sell the house for more “money” (points) for having basic architectural features such as windows, door with latches and skylights.

I’m really impressed and truly believe this is the future of education: instead of just dry, rote learning of subjects that are compartmentalized, our children are also exposed to projects that mimics real-life. These “real-life” projects simulates the world that we are living in now: on how various systems and disciplines are inter-related, understanding constraints and how to solve them creatively, how to organize themselves as a team and so on.

Written by

Seh Hui Leong

Python programmer by trade, interested in a broad range of creative fields: illustrating, game design, writing, choreography and most recently building physical things. Described by a friend as a modern renaissance man.