Technology education students from across Kansas brought their project to FHSU Friday for the Western Kansas Technology Education Fair.
These include wood projects, furniture, CAD designs and metal work. Each entry is judged and awarded a ribbon or medal. But Ness City High School thought big—they brought a whole house.
This is the second year the tech students have built a tiny house as a class project.
Brent Kerr, instructor, said the students wanted to stretch their abilities and learn more about the building trades, but the district knew they would not be able to sell a full-size house in Ness City.
“So trying to fit everything in that amount—your kitchen, your bathroom, your sleeping area, your living area and still be a livable space is a challenge,” Kerr said.
Before the end of the year, the students will add a wash/dryer, stove top, refrigerator, concrete counter tops and on-demand water system.
The home, which is mobile, will go to Woodland Park, Colorado, where it will be sold at the end of the school year.
“We would never imagine we could do this,” Andrea Morales, Ness City freshman, said. “We have never done these type of project before, so it is really awesome to try to do this during a school year.”
As students and teachers streamed in and out of the tiny house, Gabel said he was learning to talk to people about their project.
Kerr said that was a very important skill for the students to take away from the project.
“Everybody thinks in a building trades class or CTE class they are probably learning about just that trade, but these kids learn a lot about visiting with people and having a conversations and telling them what they have done,” he said. “They are learning some communication skills that you can’t get anywhere else.”
Students throughout the day also participated in competitions, including communication, problem solving, metric 500 racing and technology challenge (quiz bowl).
In the morning, middle and high school students participated in a live communication project during which they had to come up with a plan or device to improve their CTE classes. The students drew posters and then gave short recorded presentations on their ideas. Devin Smith, FHSU senior in engineer, technology and design education, said the students practice communication skills teamwork, brainstorming and public speaking.
The students at Hays Middle School wanted to redesign their classrooms and do more computer models, and the students from Paradise Junior High School designed a technobot to help with internet crashes and privacy.