After incorporating coding into my curriculum I began to think of how I can make my students learning more hands on besides the earth science labs we complete every other week. After researching and scrolling on twitter forever I decided bringing a 3D printer into the classroom will drastically change how learning takes place. Instead of solely talking about various object or animals throughout history I will be able to print out artifacts for free from the smithsonian website so my students will be able to have a truly hands on approach to learning.
In addition, California is adopting the Next Generation Science Standards which I am very excited about, these standards include incorporating engineering concepts into the curriculum. Some of these concepts include:
Define a design problem that can be solved through the development of an object, tool, process or system and includes multiple criteria and constraints, including scientific knowledge that may limit possible solutions.
Develop a model to generate data to test ideas about designed systems, including those representing inputs and outputs.
Analyze and interpret data to determine similarities and differences in findings.
Evaluate competing design solutions based on jointly developed and agreed-upon design criteria.
I intend to practice incorporating these standards this year by creating a culminating project that includes my students designing a product that can help save the environment by decreasing our Carbon footprint. They will learn how to use the 3D printer and then they will print their design and come up with a business plan about why people should buy the product they created. This is still in the planning process…so we will see what it turns into!