Built Environment Education Program (BEEP)

Cesar Chavez School BEEP program
BEEP classroom

The Built Environment Education Program (BEEP) brings architects and related design professionals into the elementary school classroom, where they collaborate with teachers to reinforce and broaden the state curriculum. The BEEP program happens over a five-week residency, beginning with an introduction to concepts of shelter, scale, and design process, leading to a culminating project where students build an architectural model of an imagined environment.

The goal of BEEP is to provide Santa Barbara elementary school students exposure to built environment concepts that will enable them to:

  • Be sensitive to the importance of working in greater harmony with the total environment
  • Recognize that they can affect the quality of the environment
  • Learn introductory skills and concepts that allow designers to influence the quality of the environment

This architect-student experience of BEEP rewards both student and volunteer; while a young mind is exposed to the world of architectural design, the design professional is challenged to explain and inspire, reconnecting him or her with the core values that initially drew him or her to the profession as a student.

BEEP is funded by the California Architectural Foundation (CAF) and generous contributions from individuals, members, and private and public organizations. In addition, BEEP education efforts are supported by the state component of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), The AIA California Council (AIACC), and are implemented by AIA members at the local chapter level.

Santa Barbara County elementary school teachers interested in having the BEEP Program in their classroom can find more information at the County Education Office Partners in Education website. Or download the Built Environment Education Program (BEEP) Handbook for Teachers and Architects.