Thanks to LPIE funding, students in Stanley’s Wood Technology classes are using cutting-edge 3D printers to design their projects.
LPIE has provided one MakerBot 3D printer and two Cube 3D printers, along with funding for online software and tutorials so that students can learn how to use the technology to design models for their creations.
In the Wood Technology elective at Stanley, students have the entire school year to design, create and build a large-scale project. Parents of students who have taken the class are probably familiar with the Adirondack chair that many of the students build during the year.
Using 3D technology, students can design their project online, and then create a small model using the 3D printer. Based on this smaller version of the product, they can build a full-size version.
“The goal is by June, they’ll be able to design a project on the 3D printer and then build it in the wood shop,” says Stanley Wood Technology teacher Michelle Murphy.
Part of the class involves learning how to read a blueprint drawing in order to build a design. Murphy teaches the students how to make the drawings to scale so they are able to build the full-sized object from the smaller model.
Murphy says the most exciting part is that 3D printing is the standard used in the manufacturing industry, where smaller models are used to show clients what a potential product would look like.
“A lot of parents come to back-to-school night and say, “I use that at work!” says Murphy.