Houses for Haiti Lesson Plan

Two amazing teachers in Florida came up with a creative idea to raise money for Haiti after the 2010 earthquake.  After discovering “Haiti Houses” on the internet, I was inspired to try it for myself and make a few changes.  Below is my version of this project. Visit haitihouses.org to see how much money has been raised for Haiti relief with “Haiti Houses”.
Objectives:  
  • Students will choose a worthy cause to support, such as supporting an orphanage or rebuilding homes in Haiti. 
  • Students will use their creativity and design skills to create items they can sell as a fundraiser to support their cause! 
Materials:
  • 1” strips of lightweight cardboard or chipboard
  • 3” x 3” squares of decorative paper (at least 3 different designs).  This could be scrap booking paper, gift wrap, colorful magazines, or paper you decorate yourself.
  • glue stick (for best results, use the Avery permanent glue stick)
  • scissors
  • peel and stick magnetic tape
  • masking tape
  • Triple Thick sealer (it’s non-toxic!)
Directions:
  1. First, cover your work surface with newspaper.
  2. Cut your cardboard into squares, rectangles and triangles of various sizes.
  3. Glue these shapes onto the back of your decorative paper.  Give the glue a minute or so to set. 
  4. Next, cut around each of your shapes, cutting away the extra paper.
  5. Then, glue a roof (triangle) to the top of each house (square or rectangle).
  6. Use scraps of paper to add doors and windows.
  7. Add a magnet to the back with peel and stick magnetic tape.
  8. Use a piece of masking tape to make a small tape roll to attach each house to a pre-printed card with the price, an explanation of where the money will go, and the name of the artist who made the magnet.  
  9. Squeeze a puddle of Triple Thick onto the front of your house and coax it carefully to the edges with a soft brush, adding more as needed. To get a nice thick coat, don’t brush it more than you have to… just enough to cover the surface and reach each of the edges. Work carefully, squeezing out small amounts at a time. It’s easy to add more, but not so easy to remove any excess that flows over the edges! (Be sure to rinse out your brush right away, if you ever want to use it again!)
  10. Set your house aside until the Triple Thick is completely dry (at least a couple of hours, but overnight is best).

Closure:

  • If this project is used as a fundraiser, set goals and track your progress.  Then be sure to celebrate when your goals are reached!
Extensions:
  • This same technique can be used in a variety of different ways.  Small gifts can be made for holidays like Valentine’s Day or Mother’s Day.  Working just a little bit larger, you can create unique Christmas ornaments.  Or, try working larger still to make decorative picture frames to enhance a special photo.  Just remember that your creation needs to lay flat to dry… this type of sealer can only be applied to horizontal surfaces.

(Affiliate links were used in this post.)

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