“Here at Skyview High School [Vancouver, WA, USA], we have been advertising our Learning Studio that is part of our library’s maker space. We have invited students to participate in projects and to check out the space by sending out emails and hanging posters around our building. Our custodian saw one of our posters and stopped in to ask about 3D printing. He explained that they had an issue with one of their magnet doorstops. The plastic cover was broken and they wanted to replace it. However, the only way to replace the outer plastic piece was to replace the entire unit at a cost of over $150.00. This seemed wasteful as he only needed a cover. He came in and asked if he thought we could 3D print a new cover. I told him I would ask our students!
Steven S. (10th grade) came in and was working in the space on Tinkercad and helping out some students with their 3D designs. We started talking and we quickly realized he could not only print a cover but could re-design it to make it even better so it won’t break as easily and will last longer. Using one of the laptops, the HP 3D scanner, and the HP Sprout, Steven scanned in a cover to replicate it. This worked but didn’t give us the exact copy that we needed. He then applied math, CAD, and design skills to replicate the cover. Steven realized if he lowered one part of the cover by shaving off part of the plate, it would have enough clearance to avoid breaking in the future. We printed out a few samples on the Dremel 3D printer and Steven worked on refining the design until it was perfect. The new cover was printed, our custodian painted it to match the existing unit, and it was then put in place. Not only did this solve a building problem, it gave Steven a huge sense of accomplishment and gave him confidence to tackle other projects.
This was an excellent example of a real world problem that was solved in our Learning Studio that is helping to save our district time and money. Steven used valuable problem solving skills along with communication and using the technology to create something to help our community. I believe this is what the Learning Studio is all about; finding ways to connect students to real world problems and giving them the time and space to solve them.
This month we are doing 3D Valentines (using Tinkercad), Origami Valentines (using the Sprout) and also working on individual projects. We are excited to have some art classes in this month to use the space as well as some learning support students who are using the studio. It has been a great asset to our school.
We continue to use our Learning Studio as a place for students to practice those “4 C skills” that are crucial to 21st century learning: collaboration, communication, critical thinking, and creativity. It has been amazing to connect students to learning in ways they didn’t even think possible. Thank you for this opportunity.”
– Traci Chun, Skyview High School Vancouver, WA