Floyd students build  ‘tiny house’

Floyd County Area Technology Center students built this 300-sq. ft. “tiny house,” with a grant from the Kentucky Valley Educational Cooperative. The house will be auctioned this summer, with bids starting at $15,000.

Floyd County Board of Education members toured a 300 sq ft “tiny house” built by Floyd County Area Technology Center students this week.

The house, which will be sold, was displayed at Betsy Layne High School prior to the board’s May 21 meeting.

Students built the house on a 24-foot trailer, from scratch, using custom-sized

countertops, waterproof laminate flooring and custom pine wood on the interior. The house has a metal roof, siding and 13 Pella windows. It features two bedrooms, one located in a loft area, one bathroom and a kitchen, and includes a mini-split air conditioning and heating system, as well as other amenities. 

“It’s pretty amazing, isn’t it?” Board Chair Sherry Robinson said when she toured the house.

Floyd County ATC Principal Lenville Martin and Courtney DeRossett, director of technology in the district, told board members about the project during the meeting, describing it as a cross-curricular project that included collaboration from students studying carpentry, HVAC, electricity and welding at ATC.

“The cross-curricular connection, when we talk about project-based learning, this is the truest I have ever seen,” DeRossett said. “All departments having to work together make it real-world for kids. I have not seen a truer design than this one.” 

The school district received a grant for this project from the Kentucky Valley Educational Cooperative last year, obtaining $15,000 for the construction and materials as part of KVEC’s “Building it Forward” program. Construction started last fall. Martin said the project was finished in April and it came in a bit over budget, at $21,000. 

He praised the students for doing all the work on this house.  

“They done a fine job,” he said. “The kids really need to be patted on the back. I’m really proud of what they’ve done.” 

He said it took the students three weeks to design this house, and that design called for a “massive” amount of mathematical calculations. 

“The process, it took about three or four weeks for the kids, they kept changing their mind on what house they wanted to do, and they finally come up with the design you see out there,” he said. “They took about three different houses and put them together and come up with this house. So, it’s kind of a neat design, just for ourselves. That’s how it got all of the windows in it and, if you noticed, the raised roof, that was all—they took, like I said, about three together, and done it.” 

He also praised ATC staff for letting students do the work. 

“What I liked about it, to me, was, my teacher let the kids do it all,” he said. “We could have jumped in and done most of it, but he didn’t. He let them do it. He let them design it….They enjoyed it. They’ve been excited about it all year. It really turned out well for us and them, and, hopefully, we’ll get to do it again next year and it’s something that they like.” 

Robinson said she’s impressed with the house, and Martin said ATC students are already planning their next tiny house project. 

Bidding for the tiny house is underway online at www.theholler.org/auctions. The auction closes on June 15 for this house. All proceeds from the sale of this house will be used for another tiny house project next year.

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