After finishing up our 3D printing classes at Henry two weeks ago, we have started a new course at Emlen and expect to start another at Logan soon. Both these classes will run until the end of the school year.
PCF owns an old 3d printer that was donated to us. We bring the printer to class with us so kids can see how it works. During the week following class, PCF touches up the objects on the computer and then prints the ones that are worthwhile. Printing takes too long to do during class; depending on how productive the students were, printing can take as long as 10 hrs (3 batches of 3+ hrs ea plus prep time).
The picture above shows the printer, box of printed materials, tools, and computer boxed up.
We have found that being able to send students home with the plastic trinkets they created on a computer is a huge motivator. Objects like keychain tags for mothers’ day, minecraft ‘things’, cellphone cradles, spin tops, crooked dice, etc.
We have found that this added motivation helps the students master the skills needed much faster than teaching alone. Using a 3d program requires students use 2-button mouse and in conjunction with “modifier keys”. For instance, holding down the shift key lets you select multiple objects or constrain movement at 90° angles. Right clicking lets you change the viewing angle but if you add the shift key, it moves to view on the work surface.
Many of these advanced mouse skills are shared among the different graphics programs in various professions.