My students are part of a mechanical design pathway in which they learn the principles of 3D modeling and Computer Aided Drafting using Inventor and AutoCAD software. Throughout their pathway, students do lots of hands on projects measuring, assembling and becoming familiar with all sorts or mechanical contraptions. Among them are bolted connections, springs, gears, cams, shafts, v-belts, keyways and many other principles. These students are able to model all of these different types of items and many more.
Upon learning usage and modeling of these types of mechanical items, I often give the students creative freedom to work in their modeling software.
These students thrive on design challenges where they can solve a problem with the mechanics they have learned.
Other than the modeling and mechanics, my students are becoming versed in communicating with different audiences. As CAD students, they are responsible for providing drawings and schematics for our welding, machine tool and AIT programs, and all of these programs speak a similar language with different nuances, and symbols. CAD students learn them all.
These students are a versatile group who are very well rounded!
My Students create 3D Models in their software daily. These models can range from simple and decorative to elaborate and useful. With our software, students can even test their designs and run simulation. However, a computer image and model does not make their model real.
With a Dremel 3D printer, my students could make their models a reality.
I am a tech school teacher and fully understand the value of hands on learning. The addition of additive manufacturing to my curriculum would open so many doors and opportunities for these students and to students in other classes. My students prepare blueprints for other disciplines within the school and sometimes those students may not understand the blueprints quite as well as we would like. A 3D printer would allow my students to produce a model for other classes that will bridge the gaps in their understanding.
Finally, students could use a 3D printer to help fund the classroom by selling designed and printed Christmas ornaments or casts for molds. This could certainly help towards our yearly purchase of certifications. A 3D printer could open up these opportunities and many more to my students and classroom.
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