No classroom can utilize a 3D printer without fun projects to motivate the learning process. Below you will find five fun projects for various ages and links to videos for the educational foundation supporting the project. The last project, Color Pistol For Light Painting, is a more advanced project, but covers many areas of science as well as art and no education is complete without at least one art class!
Hamel Monohull Paddle Boat
What a great little project for learning about Potential energy. Rubber bands can store an amazing amount of energy and this little project is a great productive demonstration of transferring energy into motion. It demonstrates rubber band energy without pulling, pointing, and shooting it. Bill Nye has this great video about potential energy.
Hot Wheels Friction Sled
This is a very simple to build device which stops a Hot Wheels car and slides the track for a distance. Students measure and calculate the potential energy and frictional forces acting within the system. Here is quick video clip from Bill Nye explaining the forces of friction.
Center of Mass Lesson – Balancing Bird
Balancing toys were always some of my favorite as kid. They seem to defy gravity and I would play with them for hours. This one opens the classroom up for discussion and hypotheses. This entertaining video is a great explanation of the forces in play.
A Simple DC Electric Motor
What science class would be complete without a study of electricity and how it relates to magnets. This motor design is simple, straightforward, and large enough to demonstrate how magnets and electricity can create motion. This video will help your class understand why.
Color Pistol For Light Painting
How can an educational article be complete without at least one art project? Though this is an advanced project, more for the teacher than the student. Once the light gun is complete, it will make an inexpensive classroom tool and only leaves the students imagination as the limit. This project requires a bit of 3D printing, some LED knowledge, and an inexpensive Arduino Nano! This project encompasses 3D printing, programming, electronics, and photography. How incredible is that!