Lesson Plan: Design Your Own Natural Science Museum

Section One: Project/Lesson Overview

Grade: 10

Subject: Broad Based Technology

Lesson Title: Design Your Own Natural Science Museum

Lesson Description:. Students will use free software (Google Sketchup) and resources from the “Magnificent Rocks” virtual exhibit to design their own virtual natural history museum.

Time Required: 5 x 60 minute classes

Curriculum Outcomes:
  • Students will be expected to create alternate representations, such as computer animations and physical models
  • Students will be expected to develop (prototype, fabricate, make) technological solutions to problems
Section Two: Project/Lesson Implementation

Equipment/Materials Required:
- Computer Lab
- Google Sketchup
- Internet Access

Lesson Procedures/Teaching Strategies:
  1. Ensure that Google Sketchup is installed on the computers being used for this project. It is available for free at http://sketchup.google.com/intl/en/download/gsu.html
  2. Have students find a floor plan to use for their museum. They can accomplish this by doing an image search for floor plans. a. The floor plan does not need to be of an actual museum. b. Students should choose a building that is a single level, or choose one floor of a multi-floor building. c. They should choose a floor plan with dimensions written on it.
  3. Alternative: Students can design their own floor plan using Paint, GIMP, or other software.
  4. Once the students have found a floor plan (or designed their own), they will need to import it into Sketchup. a. Click on File->Import and choose your floor plan. b. Attach it to the origin, it should lock into place. c. Do not worry about the scale.
  5. Scale the image. a. Change the camera angle to the top view by clicking on Camera -> Standard Views -> Top b. Find a known dimension on the floor plan. c. Click on the tape measure icon d. Use the tape measure to measure one of the walls. e. Type the actual dimensions from the floor plan. f. You will be given the option to resize the image, select yes.
  6. Create walls a. Use the “Line Tool” to draw all the way around the walls on the floor plan. b. Draw around the inside and the outside of the walls. c. Select the “Push/Pull” tool. d. Pull the walls upward.
  7. Paint the walls and floors a. Use the “Paint Bucket” tool to colour the walls and floors.
  8. Add furniture to the exhibits. a. Choose File ->3D Warehouse -> Get models b. Search for furniture that will match your museum.
  9. Create your exhibits. a. Go to the Magnificent Rocks section from the New Brunswick Museum website, www.nbm-mnb.ca/magnificentrocks b. Assign different geological time periods to different rooms in your museum. c. Save images from the website and import them into your museum the same way you did with the original floor plan. d. Place photos on the walls and into the 3D display cases that you have downloaded. e. Use Paint or other image editing software to create placards with information about the exhibits. Import them into Sketchup and place them with the corresponding photos.
Section Three: Project/Lesson Resources
Supplementary Resources:

Disclaimer: The recommended web-resources included here have been scrutinized for their grade and age appropriateness; however, contents on links on the Internet change continuously. It is advisable that teachers preview all links before recommending them to students.


Section Four: Additional Information

Credits: Trevor Nason, Harrison Trimble High School, Moncton, New Brunswick
Trevor Nason, Harrison Trimble High School, Moncton, New Brunswick
New Brunswick Museum

New Brunswick, CANADA
© 2013, New Brunswick Museum. All Rights Reserved.

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