How 3D Printing is Opening Up Doors for Kids in Schools to Better Their Future Potential
(As with all projects and inventions, we encourage you to wear proper safety glasses and seek the help of an adult for any projects that could potentially cause harm.)
Kids are our future and are now raised with an emphasis on technology. Teachers have strained to discover new ways to have a positive impact on children’s future and STEM has proven highly beneficial in schools the world over. For those that do not know, STEM is a curriculum used by teachers that utilise the four main disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. Administrators utilise real world applications through these disciplines and allow students to work out problems with hands on entities. 3D Printing is being used in these programs to facilitate real world problems.
Not Just a Visual
Students have gained much knowledge from computer-based programs over the years. Incorporating games into the process has helped as well, but 3D Printing has proven to do so much more. Instead of merely viewing an image on a screen, students have the opportunity to print 3D Models and see how they react to real scenarios. An example of this type of real-world learning is how some students are now viewing natural disasters.
The point of STEM is to open up creative facets within the brain that are not merely based on an idea, but an actual fabrication of something. In the example given above, students were asked to create solutions to the many natural disasters facing the world today. This could be anything from wildfires to flooding. Students who were asked to do this came up with solutions for restructuring buildings for earthquakes and new home designs that deflected wind rather than absorbed the impact. Children learn better when their ideas prove to have merit rather than just reading a book. 3D Printed models take the computer image and bring it to true reality.
3D Printed buildings constructed in flood zones to ward off possible mold issue and replacing standard wood in construction.
Make Math Fun
Math is among the more hated disciplines among students. Face it, either you love it or hate the thought of math problems. Students today no longer have to contend with a piece of paper with endless problems like previous generations. Teachers can make math more enjoyable through 3D Printing. One concept for this area is with the use of an alternate reality and 3D Printed models to go along with it.
Children today get engrossed in video games building worlds in programs such as Mindcraft and comparable games. These worlds are taken directly from their minds and therefore, offer a bit of relief from a possible stressful environment. Teachers have thought far ahead of students and are now teaching math in a way that allows the student to use certain math problems to solve issues within a computer program. The students are encouraged to produce their computer-based world through math and their imagination, but they can also print their own 3D Printed avatar to make things just a bit more fun.
3D Printed Avatars for Children in STEM Programs
Safety is a huge issue with children today. Gone are the days when you simply strapped a kid into the front seat of a car and when on your way. Encouraging children with safety equipment can be a challenge as the need to look cool often outweighs their perception and need of safety measures. Teachers are now employing 3D Printers to give students a new perspective on the need for safety in a way they can fully understand.
Nanotubes are one way teachers are teaching students about safety structures. Specifically, bike helmets are the focus of this type of study. Students are encouraged to look at different nanotubes to determine which is best for constructing bike helmets. These examples allow students to formulate the concept of how to better protect their heads from trauma in the instance of a bike accident. Students are encouraged to make 3D Printed models utilising the nanotube structure and test durability of models produced. (testing is done with science rather than actually having bike accidents for strength tests, so do not worry about the safety of test students.)
3D Printed Nanotube Structure for safety equipment
STEM has proven highly beneficial in reaching some of the more difficult students as it provides real world depictions of problems as opposed to simple paper equations. 3D Printing paired with STEM opportunities for students currently impacts the student’s ability to see the world around them and that thought process is set to impact their lives in the future as well. Imagine a world where we are encouraged to see objects for more than what they appear to be. The future is bright for STEM, Students, and 3D Printing.