Eco-Friendly Homes

Middle School and High School Teacher

The student will work in groups of three or four to design an eco-friendly home.

Grade Level: 11 - 12th


Length of Time: 3-4 Class Periods

Common Core Alignment

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.12.RST.3 -

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.12.RST.9 -

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.12.RST.6 -

Objectives & Outcomes

The students will be able to use the Internet and other resources to research and design an eco-friendly home located in their town.  The students will be able to draw the home to scale, identify costs of building and associated with, benefits and other advantages for having an eco-friendly home.

Materials Needed

Internet access or other resources including current utility costs for the area, prices for building materials, etc.  (All available online.) Graph paper or similar paper for drawing home plans to scale.

Prepare ahead of time:  Photo of eco-friendly home, tips for designing eco-friendly homes (


Opening to Lesson

  • Ask students how they would like to have their ideal home designed in the future
  • Many students will first think of size, type of rooms, etc.; but encourage them to begin thinking of costs associated with homes
  • Ask the question: What is an eco-friendly home?
  • Discuss responses
  • Display photos of eco-friendly home
  • Ask students if they see any differences versus a regular home

Body of Lesson


Guided Practice

  • Assign students to groups of 3 or 4
  • Ask the students to use their imaginations to design an ideal home that is as eco-friendly as possible.
  • Think of a home and rooms needed for a family of four, including size
  • Heating/cooling ideas, alternatives
  • Appliances inside the home, technology used
  • What will the home be built out of, materials used
  • System designed for recycling/reusing waste products
  • Explain to students they must also create a detailed drawing of their ideal eco-friendly home with labels showing the home’s eco-friendly features, details, etc.
  • Allow students to begin research and development using the Internet and other available sources, finding the costs or savings versus regular homes
  • As students work, remind them to share and respect each group member’s ideas and input, suggestions, etc.
  • Teacher may suggest groups assign a role for each member, such as 2 members responsible for design and drawing, others do research, etc.
  • Once students have completed the project they will present the final eco-friendly home to the class during a presentation
  • Have students vote on Most Eco-Friendly Home based on predetermined rubrics

Independent Practice

  • For homework, assign students to think about their homes and to find at least 3 ideas or ways to immediately adapt their homes to becoming more eco-friendly.


Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of designing eco-friendly homes.

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Assessment & Evaluation

Assess the completed written reports and home designs based on pre-determined rubrics

Modification & Differentiation

Students may work in pairs.  Design larger/smaller homes.  Place a limit on funds available.  Build the actual homes using craft sticks or other materials.  Have other various contests:  best looking, best design, best idea, etc.

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