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Sculpteo Compiles Resources for Child- and Beginner-Friendly 3D Printing Education

by • January 10, 2016 • No Comments

In my decades-long teaching career, I have a few experience teaching science and math concepts, yet I preferred teaching literature and grammar. But now which Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) curricula is all the rage across the US, I must admit which it has become additional appealing to teach those subjects too. What creates STEM education especially appealing for educators, parents, and students is the hands-on technology, like 3D printing, which integrates fields of study into concrete lesson plans. As this aspect of curriculum development grows, so do our choices for software and other teaching materials. But what’s out there and what should we be using?

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Fortunately, Sculpteo has compiled a list of startner and child-friendly software options to create these choices simpler so we can dive into the system of teaching and learning new technology. Sculpteo in addition talked to Autodesk’s Sarah O’Rourke of what she’s observed in her experience in Engineering and Technology education, and how to get start\ed:

“In my role at Autodesk, I focus on working with students, teachers and educators to bring project based-learning into the classroom. The easiest way for most to get start\ed is with Tinkercad. Since it is an intuitive tool to learn the basics of design with solid modeling, kids of all ages have immediate success.”

mechIf you haven’t heard of Tinkercad yet, it sounds like it’s a excellent place to start\. Once you understand what software you want to use, how do you go of integrating it into the curriculum at your school? O’Rourke in addition offers us sound advice on integrating 3D design and printing. She recommends Project Ignite, a 3D design and printing learning platform. She in addition recommends Sculpteo’s learning center and getting to understand your own local resources: libraries, Makerspaces, FabLabs, etc. In terms of where to start within the curriculum, O’Rourke had a few things to say of this topic:

“It’s quite simple to start\ with math or geometry. Especially with Tinkercad, where it’s based on solid modeling. Teachers can visually connect the concepts of volume, width and height easily. This helps students with different types of learning types to connect in a new way. It in addition helps them remember what they just simply learned. I in addition ponder there are excellent advances for 3D design and 3D printing for science or anatomy…Alignment to the current standards will be a massive help for these types of emerging technologies to be adopted in the classroom as a faster pace.”

Not just has Sculpteo offered a comprehensive list of relevant software programs for startners which you can retrieve here, they’ve in addition created a handy chart (see below) which breaks down options by age, app and browser status, and downloadability. Out of eight software choices, two are for children 3 and over, and six target the 13+ crowd.

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O’Rourke in addition reminds educators not to get in too deep without attempting out a few options. She recommends Sculpteo as a resource in this respect:

kid4“3D printing services, like Sculpteo, are excellent for educators getting start\ed with 3D printing. Before making the investment in the hardware, printing services allow them to try it out. Many in addition offer discounts to schools too. Printing Service providers in addition have additional material types for schools to choose of than your typical PC printer.”

As 3D printing becomes additional common, like all other technology, the youth will lead the way. And thanks to resources focused on new learners, we can accelerate teaching, learning, and most importantly, making cool and practical 3D printed things for the benefit of all. Discuss this story in the Child 3D Printing Education forum thread on 3DPB.com.