Defining architecture vocabulary

Vocabulary revision/ Warmer

Choose one the words below that you know and explain its meaning etc until your partner guesses which one it is.

 (student) halls/ dorm(itory)

accommodation

 

affordable

 

almost always

 

apartment/ flat

 

armchair

 

awful

 

B&B/ bed and breakfast

bathtub

 

brick

 

bungalow

 

candle

 

carport

 

cellar/ basement

 

central heating

 

condominium/ condo

 

congestion

 

cottage

 

detached (house)

 

double glazing

 

exorbitant/ pricey

 

fall apart

 

flood/ flooding

 

fluorescent strip

 

frantic/ chaos

 

green spaces

 

hedge/ bush

 

ivy

 

lack

 

loft/ attic

 

mansion

 

mellow

 

memorable

 

mock

 

mortgage

 

mugging

 

multicultural

 

notorious

 

outstanding

 

poverty

 

ramshackle

riot

 

semi-detached (house)

shower cubicle

 

shutter

 

suburb(s)

 

terraced (house)

 

thatched (roof)

 

varied/ diverse

 

wardrobe/ closet

 

 

 

 

Useful language for definitions

Match useful phrases for defining things below

I’m not sure but                                                                       where

It’s similar                                                                                who…

It’s a kind of/ sort of/                                                 I think it’s…

It’s a person                                                                            to …

It’s stuff/                                                                                   a thing that/ which…

It’s a place                                                                               type of…

It’s a time                                                                                 of…

It                                                                                               means…

It’s the opposite                                                                      is…

An example                                                                            when…

It has two                                                                                meanings – … and …

It’s a positive/ negative                                            for…

It’s a noun/ verb/ adjective                                                      adverb.

It’s (British) English                                                                word.

Describing Japanese houses and architecture

Work together to explain the Japanese architectural terms below.

Amado

Apaato

Butsudan/ Kamidana

Byoubu

Chabudai

Fusuma

Futon

Genkan

Getabako

Hoshounin

Ikebana

Koban

Kotatsu

Kura

Machiya

Manshon

Oshiire

Reikin

Ryokan/ Minshuku

Sentou

Shichirin

Shouji

Tansu

Tatami

Tokonoma

Torii

Unit bath

Washitsu

Washlette

Youshitsu

Zabuton

 

Useful language

Made of bamboo/ reeds/ straw/ earth/ pottery

Used to../ for…

Similar to…/ Like…

You slide/ fold/ store it.

Square/ rectangle/ triangle/ oval/ circle

Big/ little/ medium-sized

Traditional/ New/ Modern/ Old-fashioned

 

Match some of those terms to the descriptions from Wikipedia on the next page. 

This is a shrine commonly found in temples and homes in Japanese Buddhist cultures. It is a wooden cabinet with doors that enclose and protect a religious icon, typically a statue or painting of a Buddha

 

This literally means “wind wall” and are Japanese folding screens made from several joined panels bearing decorative painting and calligraphy, used to separate interiors and enclose private spaces, among other uses.

 

This is a short-legged table used in traditional Japanese homes. People seated at it may sit on zabuton or tatami rather than on chairs. The four legs are generally collapsible so that it may be moved and stored easily.

 

These are vertical rectangular panels which can slide from side to side to redefine spaces within a room, or act as doors. They typically measure about 90 centimetres (3.0 ft) wide by 180 centimetres (5.9 ft) tall, the same size as a tatami mat, and are two or three centimeters thick.

 

Padded mattresses and quilts pliable enough to be folded and stored away during the day, allowing the room to serve for purposes other than as a bedroom.

 

Traditional Japanese entryway areas for a house, apartment, or building—something of a combination of a porch and a doormat. The primary function is for the removal of shoes before entering the main part of the house or building. They are often recessed into the floor, to contain any dirt that is tracked in from the outside.

 

A Japanese shoe cupboard, usually situated in the genkan, an entryway or porch of the house.

 

Literally “living flowers”, it is the Japanese art of flower arrangement.

 

A low, wooden table frame covered by a heavy blanket, upon which a table top sits. Underneath is a heat source, often built into the table itself.

 

Traditional wooden townhouses found throughout Japan, most typically in the historical capital of Kyoto.

 

A type of traditional Japanese inn that originated in the Edo period (1603–1868), when such inns served travelers along Japan’s highways. They typically feature tatami-matted rooms, communal baths, and other public areas where visitors may wear yukata and talk with the owner.

 

A type of Japanese communal bath house where customers pay for entrance.

 

A lightweight, compact, and easy-to-move charcoal grill.

 

A door, window or room divider consisting of translucent paper over a frame of wood which holds together a lattice of wood or bamboo.  They are often designed to slide open, and thus conserve space that would be required by a swinging door.

 

A type of mat used as a flooring material in traditional Japanese-style rooms. Traditionally made of rice straw to form the core (though nowadays sometimes the core is composed of compressed wood chip boards or polystyrene foam), with a covering of woven soft rush straw, they are made in standard sizes, with the length exactly twice the width.

 

A built-in recessed space in a Japanese style reception room, in which items for artistic appreciation are displayed, in English usually called an alcove. The items usually displayed there are calligraphic and/or pictorial scrolls and an arrangement of flowers.

 

A traditional Japanese gate most commonly found at the entrance of or within a Shinto shrine.

 

A Japanese cushion for sitting, usually on the floor. A typical one measures 50–70 cm (20–30 inches) on a side and is several centimetres thick when new.

What topics are covered above?

Underline useful phrases for describing architecture more generally above.

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PDF version for easy saving and printing: defining architecture vocabulary

One Response to Defining architecture vocabulary

  1. Lyndy Cronin says:

    I like this activity very much. Will try it out with my course of achitects.

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