Sustainable Architecture: Shaping the Future
By Jyotsna Sharma
In Kunskapsskolan Gurgaon, during the ongoing theme ‘My Needs’, an interactive session was recently organised for the students of grade 1. The session was conducted by Ms. Nikita Bajaj Pathak, Co-Founder Partner, Design21 and her team on behalf on LifeDraft. As part of the session theme – Our Needs, Design21 team, headed by Nikita, were invited to share knowledge and create awareness among students about sustainable architecture and its need today.
Sustainable architecture is an emerging trend in today’s eco-conscious world. The idea behind sustainable architecture is to use environment friendly techniques and materials during the building process. The concept also aims to minimize the negative impact of construction through efficient energy and resource consumption which are both vital for reducing the effects of climate change. The ecological design gets reflected both in a building’s construction materials and methods in its use of resources; such as in heating, cooling, power, water and waste-water treatment.
The intention behind the session was not only to enrich the students with knowledge but also help them understand the importance of being environment conscious. By starting with basic concepts and introducing them at a young age, would help them grow to be earth-friendly citizens. During the session, students learnt about the use of natural and renewable resources to build houses. Also, different ways in which recycle materials can be used for constructing sustainable yet eco-friendly houses.
The arena was packed with enthusiastic grade 1 students who couldn’t wait for the session to begin. But they were also excited to see the familiar face of Nikita, also a guest lecturer for the second time to the same audience. Last year, Nikita and her team had conducted a guest lecture for Kunskapsskolan Gurgaon also. The slide show for the interactive session was reinforced with the help of miniature model houses put together by the Design21 team. The students learnt about various types of solutions for sustainable housing especially in rainforests.
Students observed the model houses over the counters to get better understanding of the details; they tried the wind effect on several roof types to understand why hip roof holds the best resistance against high winds and heavy rains.
Talking about the natural resources, Nikita pointed out bamboo as an essential natural material for sustainable houses in rainy areas. Bamboo is sturdy and versatile natural resource that lasts all kinds of weather. She also spoke about the importance of cross bracing concept in a structure. Cross Bracing is a diagonal support intersect that increases a building’s strength against any force. During the discussion, Nikita also mentioned Ferrock which is a stronger and reusable alternative to cement. It is largely made of waste metal dust and can be a good recycling resource to develop green construction.
The session with Nikita and her team gave students an opportunity to connect with the topics outside their textbooks; making it an enhanced educational experience for students. All the students looked delighted with the interactive session and young, curious minds had several questions and suggestions to discuss with the Design 21 team.