Design, Create, Make

Affton continues to work to build a culture of students spending more and more time designing, creating, and making. We are seeing increases in engagement and the fresh energy in the schools is noticeable. Coordinator of 1:1 Programming Manuel Herrera has taken the lead in this work. He is facilitating more and more sessions where kids are designing, creating, and making. Below is his guest post.

by Manuel Herrera

Over the past few weeks, our Project Lead the Way Bio Medical students, have been working on a Design Innovation project for their semester presentation. For this project, instead of just designing an innovative product on paper to be included in their presentations, these students are able to do some rapid prototyping using two new pieces of technology at Affton High School, the Dell Chromebook 11 and our Lulzbot 3D printer.

The 3D printer allows any student to design a product or model using free 3D modeling software on their Chromebooks. Within a couple of hours, the student can then have a physical object in their hands that they designed. The power in students prototyping their products is that they are able to experience the design process. This includes some groups going through a deep brainstorming process to identify a product while others drafted numerous iterations of their designs before they found one that was suitable for their client's needs.

Building structures with texture

Layer after layer the students see their ideas grow

Prototyping a new type of arm braces

Tinker cad serves as great design software

Problem solving around the finding the right temperature
for the 3D Printer provided real problem solving

Design and drawing is both low-fi and high-tech

Students taking control of their learning

Dell Chromebooks are being integrated into the process.