I’m currently wrapping up a 3 day workshop called Makers and Shakers at the Cincinnati Public Library. In short, this workshop involves the use of a makerspace in education. The Cincinnati Public Library has a great makerspace complete with button makers, 3D printers, recording studio, book publishing machine, UV printer, laser cutter, sewing machines, and a vinyl printer. If you’re like me, you might think, “How the heck do I use these objects in Social Studies?” One item that stood out to me due to its popularity was the 3D printer. Between this workshop, researching ideas, and discussion, I put together some ideas.
A common misconception about makerspaces, especially 3D printers, is they are only related to Science and Math. Boy was I wrong. To begin, I used the 3D printer because I have never seen one in action. I started simple and printed a blue outline of a tennis racquet. Check out my time lapse video here. All it took was this one experience to get me thinking about the use of a 3D printer in Social Studies. Here is my list of ideas:
- research ideas leading to the American Revolution, design a game, use a 3D printer to design and create game pieces
- What needs to change with monuments? Research someone who needs a monument. Design, and print a monument for that person.
- Design your own coin, symbol, flag for a country,
- Who would you add to Mount Rushmore? Research a historical figure and use 3D printer to add that person’s face.
- Which invention changed lives the most for Americans? Research, design, and print that invention. Use flipgrid or writing to explain why you chose that invention.
- Class timeline – each student prints an object related to time period and arrange chronologically.
- Find a broken or destroyed artifact – design what you think it looked like before it broke.
- Design (fill in the blank) in the style of Greeks, Romans, Middle Ages, Renaissance, etc…
- 3D print 13 colonies so they fit together. – research and explain geography’s impact on the economy and people.
- How would you define an event, time period, or decade? Design and print a related artifact. Use flipgrid or writing to describe.
- Challenge the students to think of ways to use 3D printing.
What are some ways you can think of using a 3D printer in Social Studies? Use the comment section below to share your ideas…..