What do you get when you take 40 2nd grade students, show them a 3D printer in action, give them 10 iPads, a 3D modeling app, a theme, and 1 hour?
There is no 1:1 setup, no strict curriculum, no strict instructions. Just a 1 minute overview of a tool, and a theme of “sea creatures”. Then split the pupils into groups of 4 and see what happens:
- peer tutoring
- negotiation and conflict resolution
- going beyond the original assignment
- spatial skill development
- having fun
And, most importantly, like the CEO of CBtec commented, giving children a new experience that opens their view of the world, sparking their interest and shaping their future.
It’s important to design learning environments and processes, but there is such a thing as too much planning. Sometimes the best thing to do is just give learners the tools they need, an initial spark, and stay out of the way.