Using 3D printing in lessons is now becoming more and more normal practice for UK schools. Our first blog highlighted what a selection of UK teachers where designing and making with their students. This blog is a follow on and showcases more schools and teachers and their use of 3D printing in their lessons. We’ve highlighted five schools in this article and will highlight another five in the final blog.
With an ever expanding need for technology literate students, integrating 3D printing into lessons is more important than ever. As part of the blog we wanted to promote the upcoming 3D printing course with STEM learning. The course is free for state funded school teachers to attend and and all teachers who attend receive a copy of the Intermediate Lesson pack.
We’d also like to thank Magigoo for supporting us with giveaways. All teachers will receive Magigoo samples and one school will get a Magigoo pen as a thankyou for sharing.
1. Stuart Douglas Riply St Thomas Church of England Academy
Stuart is a prolific user of 3D printing having a selection of eleven different 3D printers in his classroom (yes that’s 11 3D printers!). We recently visited PrintCity in Manchester a few weeks ago and we think that Stuart could give them a run for their money here. What’s unique about what Stuart is teaching, is he is using higher end printers such as the Formlabs 2 in his lessons. This is relatively new to schools with very few teachers using resin based printers at the moment. After chatting to Stuart he said, “We have 11 3D is printers and typically put through 40 A level projects and around 80 GCSE projects each year, all with working parts (Ardujno, Pi, BBC microbit) or electronic components”.
Below is another example of an innovative use of 3D printing in Stuart’s lessons. The parts have been designed and 3D printed and then ‘Hydro dip coated’. For those that might not have seen this before check out this youtube link. This shows how 3D printing has been used as a tool for innovation and experimentation. One thing we can tell is that he is definitely working this 3D printer hard.
2. Ges Cocker Dover Grammar School for Girls
Ges Cocker has been using 3D printing in lessons as a design tool to manufacture mini furniture models with his classes. The fantastic element to this project is the creative outcomes evidenced from the students. This is a great example of how a 3D printer can be used to print out class sets of small manageable CAD projects. Ges uses Sketchup in his lessons and to great effect. Sketchup is an easy way to introduce CAD into the design process and as a tool for 3D visualisation it’s fantastic and it’s free. Here’s an interesting fact… it’s no longer owned by Google. Sketchup was sold to Trimble in 2012. Can it ever shake off the name of it’s former owner?
3. Jon Martlew Cardiff High School
Jon has been using 3D printing in his lessons at GCSE level to manufacture smaller items to form parts of larger projects. John told us about how he uses 3D printers at Cardiff High School. He said, “we currently use XYZ Da Vinci Juniors. We have had a great experience with these printers and what’s better still is the low cost. At present we are looking how to develop the use at key stage 3. At key stage 4 and 5 we allow open use of the printers for prototyping and for the more refined end prototype. At Cardiff High we do not see 3d printing as the answer for making an entire product but instead use the technology to make smaller parts of products. Yes we have had the standard lamp shades made this year but where I think this technology comes into its own is when students can use it to design and make custom parts that do the job better than common components. Manufacturing parts that would commercially be injection moulded using 3d printing.”
4. Dan Hughes – Abington High school
So your designing a bespoke product and you need a part that’s not readily available to buy. Here’s the solution, design and 3Dprint your own. Abington School uses Fusion 360 and from the outcomes shown here it’s clear that 3D printing is embedded in students lessons. What’s unique about this design is the fact that the lid can be removed and doesn’t use any fixtures or fittings.
5. James Owen – Repton School (Dubai)
Even though not in the UK, James Owen is a UK teacher who is teaching abroad and his project is a very popular 3Dprinting design challenge in lessons. The 3D printed USB stick is a tried and tested design project up and down the country (and abroad). To be able to 3D model this requires extreme accuracy as the tolerances are so small. Margin for ever is practically zero. That’s where the challenge lies. What’s even more impressive with these examples is the accuracy of the logo designs. These certainly would be a challenge for students. If you would like more information on a scheme of work for this project then check out the Autodesk Design Academy. What’s good about this project as well is the fact that students can design the casing for a USB in their lessons and then save their files on it.
We’d like to thank all the teachers who have shared their fantastic examples of their 3Dprinting lessons. It’s truly amazing what is going on in schools up and down the country and with UK teachers who are teaching abroad. Thanks for all the support from the schools who have shared what they are 3D printing in with their classes.