Digital Fabrication Is Coming to a School Near You !!!
"A second fundamental factor in the mental development of the child is the role of exercise and of acquired experience in the actions performed upon objects. There are two types of experience, physical experience, which consists of acting upon objects to abstract their physical properties and logico-mathematical experience, which consists of acting upon objects with a view to coordinating the result of the actions." -Jean Piaget
I had an eye opening experience this past Monday as I attended a workshop put on by Shauna Smith, Nick Sanham, and Glen Bull at the 21st International Conference of the Society of Technology and teacher Education (SITE) as they presented SITE's efforts to bring digital fabrication to the classroom using both 2d and 3d printing technologies and 3d modeling software developed especially for SITE by ASPEX software.
Digital fabrication technology in the classroom will enable a child to use the computer to design a real world object and then create that object using a process of 2d printing/cutting/assembly or 3d printing. Students will be able to use the software Fablab Modelmaker to manipulate 3d shapes to engineer objects ranging in complexity from a chocolate box, to a paper 3d Saturn V rocket, to a custom LEGO type brick for their robot. These objects will then be fabricated right in the classroom!
On Tuesday of this week, I had the pleasure of seeing SITE Executive Director, Gary Marks, SITE President Gerald Knezek and initiative leader Glen Bull announce plans for SITE to host a digital repository of 3d "plans" for teachers to use in their classrooms.
For more details on the project please visit http://blog.fablib.org/