Educating the next generation
At Create it REAL we believe that 3D printing will be the next important skill that most people will have to learn. The widespread use of personal computers lead to basic IT and programming skills becoming invaluable at the workplace. In the same way word processing software, cheap and available ink-jet and laser printers made us all writers, editors, proof readers and typesetters.
3D Printing can do the same for CAD (Computer Aided Design). When used together these have the power to turn us all into product designers and manufacturers.
Industry 4.0 will bring a great change in how we design and build things and society at large. It is up to all of us to be prepared, and the best place to start is at schools.
Schools can use 3D Printers as a way to simulate product development, from design to production. It is a great way to make students to think in an integrative manner about the process of getting something new on the market.
Outside of this, 3D Printing brings several benefits to other subjects. It stimulates creativity, innovation, and a hands-on attitude. When students are given the possibility to design and print objects themselves, theory becomes practice and hard to understand subjects, like physics and math, become visual and rewarding.
Learning by doing
The benefits of additive manufacturing to society and the economy as a whole are obvious but proper, wide-scale adoption of new technologies is never a given. At Create it REAL our goal has always been to provide the tools that enable our partners to build the future of production today, and the key to unlocking the full benefits of this next industrial revolution is to train people with the right skills and way of thinking.
Outside it’s importance as a way to further the cause of wide-scale adoption of 3D Printing we also believe education to be a great opportunity to hone our technology. Technical requirements are rigorous, resources are limited and providing a great, intuitive user experience is a must. This makes for a perfect test environment.
Who do we work with?
Over the past few years we have worked with many players in the education market. From suppliers, to researchers, and simply, teachers and children. We have:
– Participated in projects
– Ran successful field trials of our equipment.
– Worked with partners on tailor-made products and features for the education market.
Throughout this we have focused on providing good support, improving ease of deployment, and developing an intuitive interface. All the while pushing our prices down to a competitive level.
Here’s an overview of the what we’ve been up to:
Timing is everything.
Around 2015 feeling both threatened by, but also curious about the effect the new decentralized way of producing could have on it’s global manufacturing hegemony the Chinese government announced an ambitious plan to put a 3D Printer in every elementary school (all 400.000 of them). This lead to a scramble to define the requirements for an educational 3D printer. Using our expertise our Chinese partner made a bid for making high speed a must for educational use.
The logic goes:
– The largest benefit for using a 3D Printer for education is the hands-on instant gratification nature of being able to hold the product of your work in your hand.
– An average class is only 45 minutes.
– If we want pupils to see the fruit of their labor before the end of the class objects need to be printed, and they need to be printed fast.
By integrating our electronics and software on their existing hardware platform, we have reduced the print times by half. Thanks to this high-speed printing is now the new standard for education.
Think global, act local.
Since 2016 we started supplying schools in Aalborg Kommune with 3D printers for educational use. The project was a success and now more than half of the region’s schools use 3D printers. We were caught off guard by how fast the teachers and children embraced the technology and created unique and innovative things.
They were also the main motivators and the first testers for our online slicing platform. Their need for ease of deployment and compatibility with the various devices the students use was a major driving factor for moving out slicing technology to the web.
We also created sets of lessons to stimulate creativity. Through small projects, students can print within the allocated class time. These lessons were based on teachers 3D printing approach for each student groups.
Moreover, the schools have made heavy use of the printers for both the local entrepreneur competition “Project Edison” and the Aalborg sustainability festival. Students were able to show off their inventions and designs to excited audiences.
We have also been a proud supporter of the local Start-up Weekend event for many years.
It’s better together.
At a European level, we have partnered with several universities and research groups:
“MAKE-IT” a Horizon2020 project
We were one of the case studies for the MAKE-IT European research project on how the role of how Collective Awareness Platforms (CAPS) enables the growth and governance of the Maker movement. We were highlighted as an example for how open innovation does not necessarily mean open source.
“IoT in Education – We are the Makers” an Erasmus+ project
Johannes-Kepler-Gymnasium, Scuola di Robotica, E-nable France, Edumotiva, Universitatea Valahia Targoviste
This project had set the ambitious target of creating and sharing free online manuals and learning scenarios for the following topics:
– 3D printing in schools
– IoT in schools
– Designing intelligent objects for interactional aims
[This page was updated on 04/05/2021 to include the following new information]
Modi: The perfect tool for 3D printing in the classroom
We also created an education platform called Modi where teachers can easily get started with 3D printing in their school or makerspace. The courses have been tested in Danish primary and lower secondary schools and enable students to 3D print directly from iPads and Chromebooks.