The Evolution of Egansville

We are so excited to announce that AFO has created AiS curricula in partnership with PAE Engineers to accompany this wonderful book they published. It follows a group of friends in the tiny town of Egansville. The town has been dealing with the effects of a landslide that has wreaked havoc on power and water resources. Luckily, a group of spunky kids come to the rescue using creative problem solving and design thinking – showing how kids have the ability to make important choices that help each other and make their community better!

You can access the book directly from the link below and read it to students during distance learning or by projecting the pages from a computer and/or smart board in the classroom. If you would like to avoid any initial ads, you can create an account on Issuu (the electronic publishing platform) that will enable you to go straight to the book.

Access the eBook here

Evolution of Egansville Curricula

This book can easily accompany any AiS residency and work into your AiS goals. In partnership with PAE Engineers, AFO has developed two Architects in Schools curriculum guide lessons that can accompany their book. See the curriculum guide lessons below.

If you are interested in piloting some of the lessons and activities related to this book, please contact as soon as possible as we would love your feedback.

Evolution of Egansville AiS Lessons:

Feel free to customize and adjust this plan to the needs of your classroom!

Grade Level: 3rd, 4th & 5th
Residency Length: One session per week for 6 weeks
Time Per Session: 30-60 minutes

Residency Goals:

  • Students gain a basic understanding of the architectural profession
  • Students gain an understanding of environmental impact and how design can help or hinder the natural environment
  • Students learn math concepts such as scale
  • Students learn the design process
  • Students practice following directions
  • Students learn how to consider the needs of others

Residency Activities:

Other Resources:

Session 1:


  • Design/building professional introduces themselves, teaches a bit about their career and answers questions
  • Design/building professional explains the design process
  • Design/building professional reads “The Evolution of Egansville” from start to finish (if pressed for time, at least read stories about Buggs and Freddy as well as the book’s introduction about the town of Egansville and the prologue relating to Buggs in the back of the book)
  • Teacher and design/building professional give students an overview of what they will be accomplishing during their AiS residency


Teacher follow up before Session 2: Have students finish reading through “The Evolution of Egansville” if it was not finished during this session

Session 2:


  • Design/building professional leads (4.105) What Makes a Sustainable Place to Live?
  • Design/building professional leads a lesson on different sustainable design choices and buildings, and leads a discussion on how sustainability could help Egansville and the students’ community
  • Design/building professional leads students through creating a cut-paper collage of what makes a healthy living space


  • PowerPoint/slideshow for the design/building professional’s presentation
  • Students will need a printed copy of the Sustainable Design Vocabulary Match and access to magazines, cut outs and paper for their collages

Teacher follow up before Session 3: Have students finish their collages and the vocabulary match. EXTRA CREDIT: Have students read these articles on sustainable design:

Session 3:


  • Students share their collages from last session
  • Design/building professional leads (2.34) What Do I See Through My Telescope? For this residency, we suggest this lesson to be done outside if possible. It can also be done by the teacher prior to the design & building professional coming for this session. Questions to ask students during the lesson: What details do you notice through your telescope on the structure you are in or near that you may not have noticed before? If you are outside, what are some things that aren’t built by people that you might not have noticed if you weren’t looking through your telescope? Why do you think it’s important to take care of our natural environments as well as our built ones?
  • Design/building professional leads at least part of (4.65) What Makes Structures Stand Up? Focus on the three sided pyramid if you are pressed for time.
  • Teacher and design/building professional introduce the final project, which will be to design and build a structure for a client – students choose or are assigned a bug client
  • Design/building professional leads students through filling out steps 1-4 of the Design Development Sheet from (4.99) A Special Structure for a Bug Client


Teacher follow up before Session 4: Have students finish steps 1-4 on their Design Development Sheets and gather research on their client. If there is time, have students complete lesson (2.20) Let’s Face It – The Eyes are in the Middle! and lesson (2.27) Now Let’s Try it on a Building

Session 4:



Teacher follow up before Session 5: Have students complete steps 5-6 on the Design Development Sheet

Session 5:


  • Students share their floor plans and elevations from last session
  • Design/building professional shares modeling tips with students and shows examples of different architectural models
  • Students begin building a physical model of their structure for their client. Encourage students to use the shapes they made from lesson (4.65) What Makes Structures Stand Up?


  • PowerPoint/slideshow for the design/building professional’s presentation
  • Students will need their Design Development Sheet and drawings from last session, construction paper, scissors, tape or glue, drawing utensils, and model making materials (e.g. recycled materials, paper, fabric scraps, felt, any art supplies)

Teacher follow up before Session 6: Have students continue building their models

Session 6:


  • Design/building professional helps students as they finalize their models
  • Students are given a chance to present their projects


  • Students will need their Design Development Sheet and drawings, drawing utensils, and model making materials (e.g. recycled materials, paper, fabric scraps, felt, tape, glue, scissors, any art supplies)

“The Evolution of Egansville” by Rachel Roellke Coddington