3D Printers in Elementary School

How can we use 3D printers in meaningful way?

Nat Stevens - Recommendations for 3D Printers:

MakerBot Replicator 2 -
Participate in MakerBot Academy
Must do a STEM project - submit to Donors Choose - Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Receive $4500 worth of stuff

InfoSystem - will fund 50%

Make it self sustaining - students can create items that can be sold to community to raise funds for printing materials

Do not get MakerBot Gen 5!

Flashforge (japanese co)
- similar to MakerBot - uses the same software

Buy or make 3D Printer?
great learning experience, but lots of problems, broken parts, etc when constructing.

Stressed Importance of Making & Printing for purpose


Before 3D Printer - try designing and creating using recycled materials or using paper/cardboard, etc.

Cannybots 3D print a robot

What to Do if object doesn’t print correctly:
Hall of Failure - Borken 3D prints - what it was supposed to be? why it didn’t work?
Wonderful learning and reflection experience

How to accommodate lots of students with only 1 3D Printer:
Achievement Award - once they have reached so many points they can “buy” a print

GCode - how the 3D printer works
TinkerCad - build something and put into Minecraft using Mineways
Blockify on iPads
Charmer - web app by Autodesk
“Why do we want to learn coding?” - STL file - 3D printing file
Autodesk 123D
Google 3D Building - create 3D replicas of buildings to overlay on Google Earth

Curriculum Info:
Kathy Schrock’s Guide to 3D Printing