Guest Posting by Matthew Straub, Director of Communications at IDEAco
As far as we know, on Tuesday we launched the first Common Core State Standards-aligned curriculum that fully integrates 3D printing technologies, design thinking, and empathy for kids. Specifically, the City X Project toolkit is geared toward kids 8-12, and is the result of testing and experimenting with the workshop with over 500 kids in four countries. Our design thinking toolkit is meant for everyone, and we couldn’t be happier that it has already been downloaded by people in at least 13 countries.
The CIty X Project is accommodates approximately six hours of lessons, beginning with a fictional story about humans building the first settlement on a new planet, called City X. Every student participating is given a citizen card with a depiction of a City X citizen asking for help in solving a social problem faced in their new community. Teachers then guide their students through the design process as every student in the class invents something that can solve their citizen’s problem. Students make clay models, then digital 3D models, and, when a 3D printer is available, actually print prototypes of their new inventions.
The City X Project toolkit includes everything needed for a teacher run the workshop, including PDFs with printable citizen cards, designer workbooks for students, and most importantly, a very thorough and detailed instructor’s guide which will help walk any teacher through these lessons, even if they’ve never used 3D modeling software!
We began our journey toward releasing this toolkit over a year ago thanks to our Presenting Sponsor, 3D Systems. It took us nearly 20 workshops and nearly 200,000 air miles to get to this point, so we hope that any educator interested in integrating new technology into their classroom has an enjoyable experience turning their class into a room full of inventors! The full toolkit can be downloaded by educators for free at cityxproject.com/toolkit.