Erinn Batykefer, MLIS

An online professional portfolio

Floor Planner | Re-design the library contest

A model room layout created with floorplanner.com

Floorplanner.com is a great tool for diagramming room layouts and spaces of all kinds.  I know from growing up in a family of three sisters in a house that only had two bedrooms that planning rooms is a big deal, especially if you have to share space.

In a library with a computer lab, Floorplanner.com offers a great opportunity to introduce teens to a versatile online tool, as well as the idea of draftsmanship and scale rendering.  Creating an account on the site is free; once you do you can not only create floorplans and furniture to scale to arrange an existing room, but you can also design dream houses with multiple floors of rooms and a whole suite of furniture and color schemes to play with.

The versatility of this tool means it’s fun for both boys and girls, from the serious design-minded types to those who just got their own room and want to make it cool.

Program Ideas:

“Dream Room Contest”

  • After school introduction to the program in the library’s computer lab.  Teens can create their own designs for their Dream Room or re-arrange their own room (this requires measurements and dimensions, but can be done by estimating).
  • Print out floor plans and display them in the Teen area with a ballot box where teens can vote on the one they like best.
  • Winners get a fun prize!
  • Bonus idea:  If you get a ton of teens at this program, consider having multiple categories and winners (like “shared bedroom,” “single bedroom,” “apartment,” and “if I won the lottery”).

“Re-design the Teen Area Contest”

  • Establish budget and parameters for teens’ designs with your Director / Board
  • 2-part program: Introduce program to teens or Teen Advisory Board and spend some time playing around.  Then give teens measurements for the new Teen Area and explain the things they have to include in their designs (like shelf space, seating areas, open walkways between rooms, etc.)
  • Teens design their dream Teen Area, and present their floorplans. Everyone votes on their favorite designs & design elements.
  • Take designs to the Director / Board / architect and discuss how to incorporate teen-designed elements.
  • Be sure to keep Teens informed about how the new design is progressing to keep them excited about their involvement!

Related display ideas:

  • Books about interior decorating, especially books about maximizing small spaces.
  • Books about architecture / careers in architecture, for teens who might be interested in exploring that.
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This entry was posted on April 15, 2012 by in Program Ideas, Tech & Tools and tagged , , , , , .

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