3D Printing

  • 5th Grade Year in Review

    Posted by WILLIAM ANDREWS on 6/8/2016

    Looking back on year one of the Makerspace room we had lots of adventures and lessons learned. The coolest thing is that all 80 5th graders were introduced to new technologies, projects, and problem solving opportunities. I look forward to next year and building on this year's experiences!


    -- Creating Project Ignite and Tinkercad accounts

    -- Finishing the PI introductory lessons

    -- Exploring, designing, and creating in Tinkercad

    -- World Project - using the Printshop app students created an artifact for the country they have created

    World Project Artifacts - Printshop App



    -- Teachers can verify student Project Ignite/Tinkercad accounts

    -- Time - it takes lots of time

    -- Project Ignite = lessons and introduction or created projects to complete

    -- Tinkercad = free design and exploration

    -- Makerbot Printshop App - a free app that takes 2D drawings and converts it to a 3D print file; easier for some students to manage

    -- Index Cards - each student had to draw out on an index the measurements of their design to verify size

    -- Checklist - create a checklist of items that must be done before printing

    -- World Project - next year students will have a choice of creating an artifact in Tinkercad or Printshop

    -- World Project - next year I will spread out the printing throughout the year rather than waiting to do all of them at once

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  • Robotics and Coding

    Posted by JENNIFER JINNETTE on 5/27/2016 10:00:00 AM

    My class was very interested in using a robot to start learning how to code.  As a kindergarten teacher, I was not sure if there was any materials to teach this to 5 year olds.  I found Dot and Dash.  They are two robots that talk to each other and work together.  I purchased all the parts for around $300.00.  The apps were free so all I needed was an ipad.  This experience has been wonderful.  My students have collaborated together to learn how to code these robots to move around a track, play a instrument, and talk.  I am planning on purchasing more robots and having them available in the Makerspace room so that students can work on coding while waiting on their turn to 3D print.  I am also going to use the handheld scanners to scan the students' heads to 3D print game pieces for math in the fall.  This will give my students their very own pawn for the school year.  Dot and Dash with ipad         Dot and Dash with supplies   3D printed head

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  • Spring Update

    Posted by SHANNON MILLHOUSE on 5/26/2016 4:00:00 PM

    Makerspace Guild

    The Makerspace has been busy this spring. We started a Makerspace “Guild” for MBE Lancers. Students from grades fourth through sixth used Tinkercad to design and print 3-D creations.

    Will made a pencil organizer for his locker; Sophie made a key ring with her initials; and Robert made a plane:


    Makerspace Guild

    Tyler made an organizer for his desk:

    Makerspace Guild

    Elle made an organizer for her bathroom to hold soap and her tooth brush:

    Makerspace Guild



    Tree House Project

    Sixth grade and fourth grade teamed up to do a design project. The premise was that they were architects known for creating fabulous play houses and tree houses for celebrities. Sixth graders worked with fourth graders in teams of two and three. They picked a celebrity and worked together to design fun play houses and tree houses with game rooms, hot tubs, kitchens, and movie rooms. They worked hard to plan the designs on graph paper. They used a lot of math including scale and proportion with both measurement systems to convert their design to life-size in feet and to model-size in millimeters. They calculated area and perimeter for various shapes and complex figures. The tree house and play house models were fantastic!

     Tree House Project  Tree House Project


    Tree House Project    Tree House Project




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  • Kindergarten 3D printing project

    Posted by JENNIFER JINNETTE on 4/23/2016

    During the kindergarten Wood unit, students used sawdust and matrix to make particle board.  The students shaped the particle board into objects like using playdough.  Turtles, tables, pigs, etc. were made.  My class took the particle board projects to the Maker Space room and we scanned each item using the tabletop scanner.  Each item took 9 minutes to scan.  We played with the Lego Walls while waiting.   After all 18 items were scanned, we used the Makerbot to print 6 items at a time.  It took 19 hours to print 6.  We checked on the printing several times each day.  Three days later, after printing all 18 items, the students compared the printed item to the particle board item.  It was a big success. 

    Particle Board Projects      Table Top Scanner   Scanned Project  Checking the scan.  Starting to print.

    8 hours of printing   6 finished projects   6 Happy Students   6 more happy students  Comparing Objects

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  • Second Quarter Update

    Posted by SHANNON MILLHOUSE on 12/15/2015 4:00:00 PM

    Students are spending time working in the room, and they are excited! They are creating, designing, problem solving, and printing their creations! They also get to spend time creating and building on the Lego Walls.

    Sixth-Grade: Sixth grade students have spent the most time in the Makerspace. They completed five Tinkercad lessons through Project Ignite and a technical writing assignment explaining the features and demonstrating their knowledge of the 3D CAD program. They are using graphic organizers to plan projects of their own design. Students are pacing themselves through the process of planning a 3D project, designing it, printing it, and reflecting on the outcomes. Some projects have been purely decorative whereas others have a function or use. Some students have designed an item from scratch. Some have scanned an object and tinkered with it in a 3D CAD program. Others have used open-source files that they tinker with and make their own. It has been fantastic to see how motivated they are to design and create.

    Fifth grade: Fifth grade students are using Project Ignite and working through the Tinkercad lessons to learn 3D design. Fifth-grade will also be designing and printing artifacts for their world project in the spring.

    Fourth Grade: Fourth grade teachers have set up classes in Project Ignite that will allow their students to work on circuitry design and 3D design. We are developing plans for fourth grade and sixth grade to collaborate on area and perimeter lessons that involve designing floor plans and printing model houses. Sixth grade students will help teach fourth grade students the design program and help reinforce area and perimeter concepts.

    Kindergarten: Kindergarten students will be scanning and printing some of the houses they designed and built based on the Three Little Pigs story. Later in the year, they will scan and print plastic sculptures from creations they make with a wood and glue composite.

    PAGE: Some PAGE students are part of a technology and design group. Each week, they are using 3D design programs such as Tinkercad and Sculptris to create, plan, design, and print projects.

    Projects Printing   From Scanned Mason Jar to 3D Creation    Sixth Grade Students Working in the Makerspace Sixth Grade in the Makespace     Sixth Grade in the Makerspace    Sixth Grade Design

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  • September Update

    Posted by SHANNON MILLHOUSE on 9/29/2015 5:00:00 PM

    This month, we have been working on getting the printers working. It has not been easy. We have had several problems getting files to print and getting the extruders to work properly. The Makerbot printer required several troubleshooting sessions, but thanks to some strong MBS tech experts, it is running. On September 25, our first student file printed. This student had designed a small toy car in Tinkercad, and we were able to print it!

    First Student File Printing       First Student Production

    We are still learning about the Cubify printers. The printing has been inconsistent, and we have discovered that we need to purchase specific Cubify software for the printers to work properly. Cubify has a more proprietary approach to 3D printing. Makerbot is more open source. Through trial and error as well as research, we are learning much about our 3D equipment, design, and printing options. 

    An exciting development in our Makerspace is the installation of our Epic Lego Walls! We have built Lego walls where students can plan, create, and build collaboratively. One gray wall is complete and installed. The other green wall should be finished soon.

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  • Summer Update

    Posted by SHANNON MILLHOUSE on 8/11/2015 5:00:00 PM

    Our Mountain Brook Elementary Makerspace is coming together! The makerspace team has met several times this summer to acquire equipment and furniture, organize our makerspace, learn and use the 3D software, and research and develop projects for our grade levels. Our makerspace has bright new functional furniture as well as three 3D printers, and three 3D scanners. We also took time to visit other makerspaces. We spent time at the Emmet O’Neal Library Makerspace learning from the tech librarians and observing children participating in their maker camp. We visited Dr. Alan Hargrave’s physics lab at Samford University. Dr. Hargrave’s students just completed a newly developed class involving rocket design and 3D printing. He took time to show us the rockets, conduct a printing demonstration, and share what he has learned through the process of developing and conducting the class. Our time spent gathering information from these community resources, organizing and updating our space, and trying out the software and equipment enables us to take our next steps—encouraging and challenging our students to design and create in our MBE makerspace.

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  • Summer Small Group Application

    Posted by SHANNON MILLHOUSE on 4/16/2015 5:30:00 PM
    We have submitted a summer small group application for two days: June 29 and 30. Our objectives are to acquire the software and equipment; clean out the room, organize the furniture and supplies; and begin to learn how to use the software and equipment.
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  • Introduction

    Posted by Donna Williamson on 4/12/2015

    D Design and Technology Maker Room
    Submitted by:   Shannon Millhouse, Bill Andrews, Jennifer Jinnette, and Paula Stanbridge (MBE)

    Students at Mountain Brook Elementary will plan, think analytically, collaborate, communicate, innovate, and persevere when met with obstacles in our new Makerspace! We will begin developing a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) space that will provide students access to modeling software, 3-D pens, 3-D scanners, and 3-D printers. MBE students will apply curriculum concepts to challenging and engaging real-life tasks and problems across all subject areas.  They will dream, visualize, create, and see their creations become realities! As we continue to invest in this space, we will expand to circuitry, coding, robotics, animation, and other areas of the maker movement. In the MBE Makerspace, students will have opportunities to use powerful technological tools that are becoming integral parts of most college majors and career choices.

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