Herndon Barstow shows off their creativity with new technology
The 6th-grade students in Mrs. Shoaf’s class at Herndon Barstow have been given the opportunity to explore the world of 3D printing. Thanks to 2 projects funded through DonorsChoose.Org, the students have daily access to a 3D printer and a variety of colorful filaments at their disposal. The students began their journey into 3D printing by becoming familiar with the machine and how it works. Then they were each able to print an educational 3D object created by a 3rd person using a website called Pinshape.
Students were hooked and soon discovered that they could create their own projects using a free web-based program called Tinkercad. The students began their journey into a 3D design by using the 3D modeling lessons that are provided free by the website. Once students had completed just a few simple lessons they felt ready to start tinkering themselves. They created Christmas ornaments during art and then used their newfound knowledge to help their 2nd-grade tech buddies create ornaments as well.
Most recently the 6th-grade students applied their knowledge of 3D design to create rectangular prisms that were proportionate, requiring them to apply their knowledge of ratios and proportional reasoning. In a single lesson, they learned how to design a rectangular prism, find the length, width, and height in millimeters, and then create the second prism with the same proportions. Their designs were then printed. They saw the immediate real life application of this skill and enjoyed working with models of the shapes instead of trying to visualize them on paper.
The use of 3D technology has opened doors for these students to explore and grow in ways that were previously outside their grasp. There is 100 percent engagement when the students are taught utilizing this 3D technology. It is a welcome addition to the educational setting.