MakerBot Wants 3-D Printers in Every School in the US

If you’ve never had the privilege of seeing something that was made from 3-D printing, let us just say that it really is something to behold. Although there are some critics who see it as nothing more than a passing fad, thanks to major corporations like Coca-Cola and eBay, it’s hard to believe that 3-D printing will not be something that is here to stay.

A part of it is due to all of the benefits that provides. For one thing, it is highly innovative because you can print a prototype in a short amount of time, ask for feedback and then redesign the item in just a matter of hours. Another great thing about 3-D printing is that it’s relatively easy to use and since you can actually hold the model within your hand once you are done printing it, it’s far more effective than a computer image. And still two other reasons why 3-D printing is so fascinating are due to the fact that you can personalize items and also save money because you can correct errors before you print your final run.

And when you really stop to think about all of the things that a 3-D printer can do, it makes a lot of sense that the 3-D printer company MakerBot is actually looking to put a 3-D printer in every school within the United States. Although it is a pretty ambitious effort, at the same time, it’s also a very admirable one too.

According to Bre Pettis, the CEO of MakerBot, by putting 3-D printers in the educational school systems, this will help to significantly alter technological education for the better, especially being that there are many schools that no longer have shop class in them. This truly is unfortunate because shop class taught students design, it improved their mathematic skills and it also introduced them to engineering while refining their problem-solving abilities as well.

However, if MakerBot’s efforts are supported, 3-D printers will be able to produce similar results. And the great thing is that the process for obtaining a 3-D printer (complete with cartridge ink) is actually pretty simple. All the teachers have to do is register on the education crowd-funding site DonorsChoose.org. After registering, they will be able to receive a MakerBot Academy bundle that includes a Replicator 2 printer and other supplies (like curriculum aids and technical support). Being that the printers are offered through a crowd-funding source, it is the hope of MakerBot that people and corporations will make donations for the schools to receive the printers; ones that MakerBot is offering at a discounted rate.

As if that is not amazing enough, MakerBot is also in the process of launching a design challenge that will be simply called Thinkiverse. What it will do is invite members of its community to create real-world objects that teachers can use in their classrooms to teach their students how to better develop their math capabilities.

So if you’re a teacher, it’s definitely to your advantage that you register for a 3-D printer on DonorsChoose.org. And for the rest of us, it only takes a moment to make a donation to the campaign. Anything that can make our students more academically successful, it’s definitely a worthwhile investment. Especially when you can see the results in 3-D.

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