Home Building Lowndes County

Last year, the 'If I had a hammer' program served over 2,000 students in seven school districts in south Georgia. Now, it's back again hoping to give local fifth graders a lesson on life by constructing a house.

Students are given the tools, doors, windows, siding and a front porch to build a small wooden house. It sounds impossible, but as the students demonstrated Monday, anything is possible with education and teamwork.

After three hours of hard labor, Ms. Pittman's fifth grade class walked into the wooden house that they spent time building.

“Everybody joined in, even the adults helped us because they knew we're going to need help on our way, with our future, like that,” says Sarah.

The project is part of an effort to educate students that teamwork and education helps build a strong foundation.

“Also helps them realize things are not going to be given to you, invest time, effort and even some sweat to gain those things you want in life,” Clifton says.

The creator designed the program to tie in classroom curriculum with construction. The build also emphasizes using everyday experiences to accomplish goals in life.

“You work as a group and have something completed that they build, they can walk, open the door, close the door, I think by seeing what they've done, they did the building, it's their house,” Tom says.

The project will be available for the public to view on VSU's campus which will host classes 3 to 4 times a week, building a total of 100 houses. A demonstration grant funded the program, but it will expire in June 2004. They are looking for someone to buy a 2-year license and continue it, which will cost $30,000.