Lower School active learning environment with addition of 3D printer
The Lower School STEM program added a MakerBot 3D printer this school year. The printer is similar to the one in use by the Upper School STEM program. The printer has given the students greater opportunities to see their vision come to life.
Mrs. Shannon LoRusso, who is also the advisor for the Lego Robotics Club and the Makerspace Club, has had her students design and create puzzle pieces, replica Legos, and even a plaque of gears that was one of the items placed in the time capsule box.
“Of course, it’s fun but the more important element is how they can now see their engineering skills through a process. They’re able to design something with a program and have it implemented through production. This gives them real-world skills at an earlier age than most and enhances their learning curve.”
The students were able to use Autodesk Inventor and Tinkercad, two computer-aided design applications used to create 3D digital prototypes in the design, visualization and simulation of products. Tinkercad is used more so by hobbyists, teachers, and kids to learn the basics of digital designing while Inventor is one of the primary software applications used by manufacturing industry professionals. In using Inventor, Mrs. LoRusso says the students are immersing themselves in what professionals are currently doing in the workforce.