The week of 9th March 2020 is Science Week in the UK. A few weeks ago my sons’ school asked if any parents could help run science sessions. I am a signed up official STEM ambassador so I replied that I’d love to.
A few months ago someone I know at work (a big software company) ran a computer modeling session and in autumn 2019 I had done pH with Beavers (see STEM: science with Beavers). So I offered school either session, they said “both”. Luckily my manager is very supportive and has let me take time out to prepare and run the sessions. See Science Week 1: year 5 experiments for the first session.
3D computer modeling
The project and examples needed to run the exercise were all sorted a few weeks ago and I’d given admin access to the teacher too. She set up all the student accounts in our online web app and gave the children stickers for their logins.
Today the children each took a template model of a key ring and some 3D letters, learned how to position the letters and change the perspective of their model. They adjusted each object til they had it just right. Then they transferred their models to the design app, where they coloured them, added stickers and a scene background.
Sounds simple right?
With 30 kids and a teacher not familiar with 3D modeling, that took us an hour!
There were some kids who had great intuition and were steps ahead or finding new ways of doing things that I didn’t know about. Others were a bit more patient and others found it tricky, forgetting steps and finding themselves with misshapen models.
The teacher said there was less chaos than usual for a computing lesson so I’ll take that as a win. There was loads of enthusiasm from the children as well as confusion from working with a new app.
It doesn’t feel right for me to share any of the work the children did, so instead here’s my quick demo key ring design.