The Fort Atkinson Middle School library purchased a 3D printer this year and has begun partnering with teachers to bring design skills into the classroom. 6th-grade science classes were starting their Models and Design unit, so Mrs. Folk and Mrs. Agnew decided to create an assignment that would allow students to create something that could potentially be 3D printed.
First on the list was to help students begin thinking like designers and inventors. They were asked to look for a problem that could be solved by inventing a new object or improve upon a functional object already in existence. Their creative ideas and their interest in designing something that would be helpful to others are quite impressive.
Next, students were introduced to the 3D design and modeling software called Autodesk Tinkercad, After watching tutorials and receiving some instruction from Mrs. Folk and Mrs. Agnew, students began turning their initial ideas and sketches into 3D designs. When finished, they wrote a reflection on the entire process, including a persuasive pitch explaining why their design should be chosen for printing. Mrs. Folk and Mrs. Agnew reviewed all the designs, and though they would've loved to print them all, they chose a handful of the most promising designs. These include a marker grip for a fellow student, a utility clip, a phone case, an earbud case, and a cup holder.
Students loved seeing their classmates' ideas come to life!
For more information about this, please contact Michelle Folk, the Middle School librarian.