Creative Connections With 3D Printing and Thinglink in ILIS

By the Integrated Learning and Information Science Department
Second grade students recently studied various biomes in their classrooms and used this opportunity to learn about different animals, landforms, weather patterns and more. Students did research in class, and then used their knowledge of tundras, grasslands, deserts and rainforests to further their understanding in ILIS. Students also studied countries in their classrooms and tied this work to research using picture books in ILIS, as well as created Thinglinks to highlight their favorite parts of their studies. During their ILIS classes, 2nd graders used student-friendly online database PebbleGo to continue building their knowledge of biomes and countries and used that information to create 3D designs. 

Second graders started with an introduction to 3D printers, 3D printing and 3D design, which walked them through how 3D printers work and how CAD (Computer-Aided Design) tools help people design objects in a three-dimensional space. Students also saw examples of 3D printing’s real-world implications that help people in various ways, like inexpensive prosthetics for children, animal assistance, affordable housing and more. After hearing about the ins and outs of 3D design and printing, students chose one thing to design that represented the biome they studied. Next, they used paper and pencil to think about their objects and sketch out ideas of what they wanted to create in three-dimensional work. 

Once students had their two-dimensional sketches, they moved onto using Tinkercad to design their three-dimensional objects. Second graders chose a variety of designs to create from their biomes, including: mountain ranges, animals, trees, plants, etc. They used 3D objects within the Tinkercad software to build up their designs and also used the 3D sketch tool to add more elements to their work.

Once they had designed and submitted their objects, 2nd graders were able to see their creations come to life on the 3D printers in the TIDES Garage makerspace in the Kovler Family Library. Once the designs were printed, students used markers to add color and other features to their 3D prints.

Students also discovered Thinglink, an online creation tool, to share other points of interests from their biomes and interesting facts about their country study. Students created one Thinglink for their biomes and one Thinglink for their country. Each class then voted on one object that would represent the country they are studying to print and display in their classroom for their country/cultural study. 2-C chose the Eiffel Tower, 2-BW chose the Taj Mahal and 2-W chose a kangaroo! The 2nd graders did a great job.

All of the Country Thinglinks are on their iPads.
Francis W. Parker School educates students to think and act with empathy, courage and clarity as responsible citizens and leaders in a diverse democratic society and global community.