Originally published by Stratasys, a global leader in applied additive manufacturing. AET Labs is happy to serve the New England education community as a Stratasys partner. High-Level Learners In 2011, Marlborough High School (MHS) in Massachusetts established their STEM Early College High School program after receiving a grant from the U.S. DOL and the Massachusetts Department of Education. The goal? Develop students’ critical thinking skills by offering a higher level of interdisciplinary learning on state-of-the-art equipment. “What we’ve started to understand is the American workforce, especially in the high-skill industry sectors, is dwindling. In order to change that, we have to change the way we’re educating students,” said Dan Riley, Director, Marlborough Public Schools, STEM Early College High School. Student Driven The specialized STEM curriculum at MHS immerses students in a rigorous learning experience, providing them with the skills essential for college and career readiness. MHS STEM students develop creativity, critical thinking, effective communication and strong collaboration skills through project-based learning and advanced classroom technology, including several uPrint™ 3D Printers. Paul Duplessis, the engineering and technical drawing instructor, pushes STEM students to develop their design and problem solving skills by thinking creatively. “The transformation of students’ work can be remarkable, giving them a feeling of real ownership for the development of their design,” said Duplessis. STEM students are challenged to innovate using their skills in CAD, 3D printing, robotics and engineering to design projects that often must move, rotate or light up. “I like to see the excitement as students test and solve engineering problems, redesign projects and test again to find the proper solution. This really is the ultimate in student-driven learning with hands-on, project-based investigation that leads to solutions,” said Duplessis. Linking STEM Across Disciplines Not only does the engineering program incorporate 3D printing, math and English STEM classes have also found ways to bolster curriculum with it. “When I started teaching the STEM English curriculum, I wanted to incorporate as many of the skills they’re learning in their engineering class as possible,” said Lindsay Shomphe, MHS English teacher. “Nowadays, everything is skills based, so it’s not ‘did you read this book,’ it’s ‘did you learn how to write a research paper, did you learn about analysis and characterization?’ I teach those same skills, just in a little different way.” Shomphe weaves 3D printing into teaching classics like “Julius Cesar” by having STEM students design and 3D print models of the Globe Theatre, one component of a larger research project. She also teaches the play, “A Raisin in the Sun,” and has students create and print character symbols, adding another layer to the development of their characterization skills. By working 3D printing into her curriculum, Shomphe not only helps bolster the STEM program, she often inspires students not in STEM to get involved. “It is neat to see kids who weren’t a part of the STEM classes getting excited about 3D printing and asking questions,” said Shomphe. “When they’re not in the program and they think it must […]
Educators from the Northeast are once again invited to join AET Labs and our co-hosts Stratasys and GrabCAD for this year’s Digital Fabrication Showcase at WPI. Spots are still open for students to enter the regional Extreme Redesign People’s Choice Challenge. Students will once again compete on-site as individuals and teams for bragging rights and the chance to bring home their own MakerBot Replicator+ 3D printer. This year’s event will feature a panel of New England teachers who are successfully implementing digital fabrication tools in their classroom, in an engaging discussion and Q&A. Stay tuned for an exciting announcement regarding this year’s distinguished guest speaker! Click here for details about the event including vendor information.
Ask your students this: What if we could design objects that evolve and adapt to inclement weather instead of fracturing? The AET Labs team is thrilled to announce Skylar Tibbits, founder of the Self-Assembly Lab at MIT, as this year’s keynote speaker at Dig It. Fab It. Make It., May 3rd at WPI. In this prestigious laboratory, objects in 3D come to life, evolve, adapt to their environment and assemble themselves in contact with water, wind, heat and other terrestrial phenomena. Honored with multiple distinctions, Skylar is the inventor of 4D printing and a noted TED Talk fellow. Tibbits’ research focuses on self-assembly and programmable material technologies for novel manufacturing, products and construction processes. Currently a Research Scientist in MIT’s Department of Architecture, he teaches graduate and undergraduate design studios and co-teaches “How to Make (Almost) Anything”, a seminar at MIT’s Media Lab. If the TED Talks below are any indication, the Dig It. Fab It. Make It. audience is in for a treat this year! (Haven’t registered yet? Click Here to Register for New England’s Premiere Fab Lab Expo for Education)