Talking Ed.: 3D Printing Lab

Talking Ed. with Cody Behles

Episode 010 (View entire series)

Cody Behles provides background on 3D printing and highlights some of the powerful ways that it can be used in schools.

Related Posts

Tour of 3D Printing Lab


Image Source:

Build. Make. Hack. Grow. Every Kid Can Be a Maker with DIY Club.

DIY is a club for kids to earn Skills. DIY Makers share their work with the community and get patches for the Skills they earn. Each Skill consists of a set of Challenges that help them learn techniques to get the hang of it. Once a Maker completes a Challenge, they add photos and video to their Portfolio to show what they did.

Makers are curious about the world and strive to learn all kinds of practical knowledge and share it. They seek adventure in the outdoors, participate in communities, use technology to innovate, and have the confidence to try new things” (Source).

Take a look at and consider the positive impact it can make in your family, classroom, club, civic group, etc.

“Creativity now is as important in education as literacy,
and we should treat it with the same status.”

–Sir Ken Robinson

Paper Airplane World Record

Former Cal quarterback Joe Ayoob sets world distance record for throwing a paper airplane. I saw this during SportsCenter and I instantly started thinking about all the learning and fun that could be generated with this video clip. The STEM teacher in me just loves this sort of thing.


Educational Connections

Use friendly competition as a motivational strategy and challenge teams of learners to design the paper airplane that will travel the greatest distance. We are seeing greater emphasis placed on design and engineering in STEM areas on a number of fronts (Common Core Standards, recent grant RFPs, etc.). This would be a way to provide students with practical experience with design, project management, and more.

Consider cranking the discovery learning up a notch by providing non-traditional materials available, too. Will an airplane made of an entire sheet of newspaper travel a greater distance? Does the addition of paperclips to a plane’s design impact results?

Think way outside the box and challenge teams to work together using only non-verbal communication. This can really spice things up and promote creativity and higher-order thinking. My students always enjoy this and usually astound me with their creative communication strategies.

Let’s not overlook some of the more traditional connections. This can be an organic way to provide students with practice with measurement using both standard and non-standards units. This could be coupled with data collection, data anlaysis and the presentation of results through graphs and tables.

Those are just a few connections. Please share your ideas in the comments.

Collaborative Diagrams, Concept Maps, Site Maps, and More

Thanks to Cindy Brock, I learned about an interesting web tool today. Cacoo‘s website states that it “is an online drawing tool that makes real-time collaboration a reality,” but I found this to be an incomplete description of its many capabilities.

Here are some of the features that I noticed while becoming familiar with Cacoo.

  • Multiple users editing the same diagram means real-time collaboration.
  • Cacoo allows you to share diagrams with everyone.
  • Shared diagrams can be edited by anyone.
  • Create wireframes, mind maps, network diagrams, site maps, and many other types of drawings using “stencils” that you drag and drop into place.
  • Cacoo can be pasted into a variety of web applications, such as Wiki and Blog.
  • Promotes collaboration through “diagrams” with flexibility, quickness, and beauty.
  • Currently available in 13 languages.

View the full list of features.

Multiple Representations of Understanding with Technology

These are the slides from my first Tennessee Educational Technology Conference presentation. Unfortunately the animations and effects were lost when uploaded to SlideShare. I’ve shared my notes and resources from this presentation over on my wiki, Learning Telecollaboratively. I hope to create a Vidcast or SlideCast of this presentation once I return home and things settle down.

I demonstrated that with freely available digital technologies students can demonstrate their understanding of course content in multiple ways (images, audio, video, presentations, artwork, and more). Each student’s end product (learning artifact) allows them to personally self-express their understanding of the content/mastery of the skills. Although teachers may not be comfortable using all of today’s technology it is important to consider allowing students to use it to communicate their understanding as they are often more naturally able to more fully express themselves with digital media.

View more presentations from Clif Mims.

Conference Tag: #tetc

Animoto Does Even More

I’ve been a fan of Animoto ever since @kconger introduced it to me about a year and a half ago. I’ve used it to make fun videos for friends and family and for end-of-event presentations for things like a conference we hosted and for church camp. I even got the 10 free bumper stickers back when they were offered.

The Animoto Video Contest finalists and winner have just been announced. Wow, folks are doing some really “cool” things with Animoto. I knew that I could now upload and add video into my Animoto files, but I haven’t gotten around to actually trying it. I’m not sure that I would have thought to be as creative as these folks, though. Take a look at the contest page and see if you aren’t inspired. I’m hoping students will begin using this to complete some of their assignments, too.

Animoto Logo

Research and Collaborate with SimplyBox

SimplyBox is a free service that allows you to visually capture any part of a web page. As you collect items that you captured, you organize them in boxes. You can then share these items or boxes with friends, colleagues, … the world. The result is: efficient and visual collaboration around content. They call it “content networking.” (Source)



  • Collect only the parts from a web page that you want.
  • Write your notes/comments on the content you found.
  • Have a direct link back to the sites each of your items were collected from.

Student Collaboration

  • Collect into a box useful content from the web and add your comments to it.
  • Share the box with your students, even if they are not SimplyBox users.
  • The students can add their comments and content.

Connecting Beyond the Classroom

  • Create boxes with content related to the different topics you teach.
  • Exchange the boxes with other teachers (even if in different schools!.
  • Have them help you find more content and engage their classes in the discussion.