Students will write about the history of modern commercial architecture in the United States and Hammond, Louisiana in a narrative manner in preparation for the LEAP 2025 Grade 7 English Language Arts Assessment.


Lesson – Writing about Modern Commercial Architecture in Hammond
Length of Lesson: 60 minutes

Architectural Principles
Design is accomplished by composing the physical characteristics of size, shape, texture, proportion, scale, mass and color.
Order is the arrangement and organization of elements to help solve visual and functional problems.
Visual relationships are determined by light, shadow, edges and contrast.
Balance is the creation of visual harmony through the use of color and the manipulation of form.
Form follows function is a design approach where the form of the building is determined by the function of its spaces and its parts.
Nature is a model for architectural forms and shapes.
Mass creates form, which occupies space and brings into being a spatial articulation.
Symbolism is an important means of visual communication for architecture.
Visual thinking is a key to awareness of the built environment.
Sustainable design of the built environment protects the natural environment.
Social structure, culture and the built environment have a direct influence on one another.
Design is experienced through human sensory perception.
The creative process is basic to design.
Aesthetics is the artistic component of architecture.
Climate and the natural environment influence design decisions.
Architecture satisfies emotional and spiritual needs in addition to physical needs.
Past, current and future technologies influence design decisions.

Images of Hammond Commercial Buildings (Included)
Handout about John Desmond and Modernism in Hammond (Included)

1. Begin by showing students images of the famous modern commercial buildings and modern commercial buildings in Hammond, Louisiana. Ask students what their first impressions of these buildings are. How would they describe them? What is their opinion of buildings that look like this? What feeling does this structure evoke?
2. Give students the John Desmond and Modernism in Hammond handout to provide context to the modern commercial building images they’ve just seen.
3. Students should write a narrative essay response using the history of modernism in Hammond and the United States as source material. The narrative essay should be written in accordance with Leap 2025 benchmarks and style guides.

Teacher’s Evaluation
1. Teachers should evaluate if the essay properly incorporates material from the history of modern architecture handout.
2. Essays should be evaluated in accordance with the Leap 2025 standards.