We will take two of our favorite things, 3D Printing + Minecraft, and learn how we can take our designs from pixels to plastic! Students will use laptops to design, and create something in their Minecraft worlds. After we will export that to a special piece of software that allows us to create a type of file that the 3D printer can read. Weather you want to make a huge castle with a mout, or replicate a famous statue, there is no limit to what you can create. If you can build it, we can print it.
Our focus will be on the 3D printing mostly, and how everything works. Starting with our 3D Printing deck, students will learn about the third dimension, see examples of 3D prints, and learn about different methods that people have invented to print three dimension objects. After a quick discussion, we will hop onto the iPads and work with an app called 123D Design, as well as an app called Makerbot.
Examine the 3D printers, and get an understanding of how they operate. Start a print so we can see all the moving parts.
Start with the iPads and a couple different 3D design applications. We will use the Makerbot iPad software to create different types of customizable prebuilt items. After getting a grasp on that, we will move to 123D Design and start working with the primitive shapes, and our imaginations to design something from scratch!
How the 3D printer operates, and some vocabulary words like third dimension, extruder, and filament. Students should also continue brainstorming what they would like to design, and print out! It never hurts to spend some time sketching out on paper with a pencil your ideas.
The kids enjoyed the Reveal deck, especially the part about the 3D printer that prints with chocolate instead of plastics. We also took a look at both of the printers, and started a print so we could all see it in action. The MakerBot App was a lot of fun, I think they liked the bracelets the most, but they also made some really cool medals. I think it can be a little overwhelming starting with a blank slate, but we had some fun in 123D Design using different shapes, and learning how we could snap them together to create all sorts of wild things.
Revisit some of the concepts that we had gone over the last class. Start looking at how we can use Minecraft as a way to design our ideas, and build them. Finally, use a software called Mineways to export them in a format that is acceptable for the 3D printer.
Instead of using iPads we will all be using the Macbook laptops. Mineways unfortunately only works with the PC version of Minecraft. The kids will have two opportunities to build different things. The first challenge will be to build a house, castle, or structure of some kind. The second challenge will be to be to design and build a huge statue on a superflat world! Next, we will see how we can take those files and move them to Mineways to complete the next step in our process.
Today we went over the process, which is really four steps.
Kids should have an understanding of this process, and what it takes for each step to be completed. First we need to create our design, in this instance we will be using Minecraft to create, and build. Then we need to essentially do a simple file conversation from one format to different format, one that our Makerbot 3D Printer is able to understand. Next we will use the Makerbot software to lay out our design, and prepare it for printing. Lastly, we will get the final file onto an SD card, inserted into the printer and start the print.
I've noticed over the years of teaching this class that different kids enjoy different ways of designing things, seems pretty obvious. But they also prefer certain devices. Being that this group is younger they definitely prefer the iPads for making things. Unfortunately Mineways only does PC Minecraft worlds, so working with the PC version presented some challenges. But they didn't seem too phased, after all it was still Minecraft! Throughout the week I will be printing off their creations in preparation for Saturday.
We will take a look over the 3D printer, and learn about it's different parts. The kids will all take turns unloading and loading the filament, also learn what to do if the 3D printer gets jammed.
Learn about the process of exporting, importing, and then exporting again! In order for us to make this all work, we need to go through a process of converting our creation into a format that the 3D printer understands. Since we have a Makerbot 3D printer, we will be using their desktop software to prepare our prints.
Look at one last piece of software used to design things to 3D Print. The kids will use the Chromebooks, and play around with TinkerCAD. We will start right off with a 30 minute build-a-thon, and then quickly go through our process to speed print our builds! They will learn the different ways that 3D Printing can be slowed down, or sped up.
While waiting for our prints, the kids will have the chance to use a unique tool and that is the 3D Printing pen! The cool thing about the 3D printing pen is that you can make 1D and 2D creations on a piece of paper, or you can very carefully start connecting things and build something 3D!
Working with the Chromebooks on a piece of software called TinkerCAD. It's an online web application that lets you use primitive shapes and prebuilt shapes to create anything! It has a couple tools similar to some of the other software we have used. Do a quick 30ish minute random build-a-thon and then speed print our designs in all sorts of colors!
Students should have an understanding of 3D printing, and what you can do with it. There are so many different applications, and we will only continue to see more in the future. They should be comfortable working with shapes in the third dimension, and have learned two different ways we can create modelsx, that can then be 3D printed in all sorts of materials and colors.