To model something is to show it off. To make a model of your favorite car is to create a miniature version of it. To be a model is to be so gorgeous that you’re photographed for a living.
The word model, which can be a noun, verb, or adjective, comes from the Latin word modulus, meaning “measure,” or “standard.” If you are a model student, you do everything as the school and teachers wish: you are the standard. If you model your life on your hero's, you try to do what he or she does. If you are a clothing designer you will need to hire a model to model your creations.