My school has a fine old building that dates back to the late Elizabethan period, but I point out to pupils that its components are pretty much the same as most buildings today - it has walls, a roof and windows.
With the aid of a digital camera my Year 5 group made a record of the tall brick facade. Before we went back to the classroom we had a closer look at the slender Tudor bricks and how they had been bonded together. We then looked at a more recent wall - the bricks were fatter and laid differently.
This helped to focus the children on detail.
"I thought we were doing Greek temples," said one child. "We are," I replied, and handed out pictures of a Doric temple in Greece, while photos of the house were printing out.
Using the temple's basic structure as a guide, the children drew its simple outline (pediment, column, base) over the top of the photograph of the house, revealing the intrinsic similarities between the two.
This led to a discussion about materials - brick, stone, wood and concrete - which finally led to the finer details of Greek architecture.
The children produced a drawing or painting of the house and the temple.
The temple was labelled with the names of some of its basic parts.
This was followed by the construction of a clay temple facade, using pliable wire as a frame.
Donald Short Head of art and ICT, Moyles Court School, Hampshire