Futuristic 3D Printers Are
Coming To School Classrooms
In 2013 the Department for Education ran a
project to allow 21 secondary schools to trial the use of 3D printers in
STEM and Design and Technology classes.
Feedback from this exploratory project
confirms that "3D printers have significant potential as a teaching
resource and can have a positive impact on pupil engagement and
Following the success of that
this year (2014) the Education Secretary is bringing the
technology into more schools so up to 60 teaching schools can buy 3D
printers and train teachers to use them effectively. We expect many
other schools will take up the initiative in the near future, if not
From September 2014 Design and Technology (D&T)
will undergo a significant re-write. According to the new syllabus
published June 2014 .. "pupils will be taught how to design and make
products. They will also be taught how to use high-tech design equipment
such as 3D printers as well as learning about robotics".
Why Should Schools
Use 3d Printers?
Many Ways 3D Printing Can Be
Used In Education
1. Engineering design students can print out
2. Architecture students can print out 3D models of designs
3. History classes can print out historical artifacts for examination
4. Graphic Design students can print out 3D versions of their artwork
5. Geography students can print out topography, demographic, or
6. Cooking students can create moulds for food products
7. Engineering students can print out replacement parts or modified
examples of existing parts for testing
8. Chemistry students can print out 3D models of molecules
9. Biology students can print out cells, viruses, organs, and other
critical biological artifacts
10. Math students can print out “problems” to solve in their own
learning spaces, from scale models to city infrastructural design
3D Scanning & Printing Creates
Stunning Artistic Sculptures
Using a 3D image scanner on human subjects you
can transform incomplete 3D data into incredible 3D printed sculptures.
This example is a result of combining modern 3D
scanning and 3D printing technology with ancient bronze casting
3D Printing Helps Visually Impaired
A University Of Colorado team has printed a 3D
version of children's book "Goodnight Moon" (by Margaret Wise Brown)
allowing visually impaired children to touch objects in the story.
This is a great example of how 3D printing can
be applied in the classroom.
How 3D Printing Works
3D printing sounds like something from science
fiction, but the process is similar to that of CNC machining, where
slabs of materials are cut into specific shapes and products. But rather
than cutting, it prints.
A 3D printer works by “printing” objects, but
instead of using ink, it uses more substantive materials; plastics,
metal, rubber, even foodstuff. It takes an electronic scan of an object
and slices it into layers it can then convert into a physical object.
The result is a product that while not as
intricate, durable, or functional as the real-world equivalent, is
otherwise a real thing that didn’t exist a few minutes before you
In fact, what it is you’re actually producing
depends on what is being printed. If it’s toy jewellery, rubber balls,
and plastic chess pieces your after, you’re printing not an model of the
real thing, but the real thing itself. Confused yet?
As far as how this can be used in education,
it’s a matter of bringing objects out of the computer screen and into
the hands of students for inspection, analysis, and other processes that
can benefit from physical manipulation. In that way, 3D printers may
eventually be able to bridge the gap between the physical and the
digital–use a screen to find what you need, then print it into
Supplying 3D-Printers & More Information
Cotswold Printers are approved to supply and
support a range of stunning 3D Printers from 3D-Systems. There are many
reasons these are particularly suited to use in Education:-
Voted MAKE magazine’s “easiest to use” and “most reliable” 3D printer.
Straight out of the box - you can get started immediately, just plug
it in and start.
The only 3D printer certified for safe at-home use by adults and
We provide full support to our UK user-base, from UK-based support
staff. Most other products on the market rely on distance support
from the USA. There is also an extended 3-yr On-Site Warranty available
for these products.
our 3D printer
page for more information on the products we supply from 3D Systems,
or call us on 01684.276178.