• Danielle Boyer, Founder

Engineering Design Club: The Last Day

We have learned a lot since the beginning of class in May! We learned about the design process and designed a phone case to help solve problems.

We designed to 3D print and learned the basics of using the SOLIDWORKS App for Kids. We brought in guest Rob Maldonado to learn about different materials and reverse engineering, seeing a cool Markforged 3D printer in action. We assembled Every Kid Gets a Robot and learned about robot components in the process. We learned about circuits and reading complicated diagrams. We also learned the basics of programming in Javascript and Block coding.


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Check out a slideshow of our classroom moments and projects:


For our last session, we continued learning about circuits and decorated our robots with fun craft supplies varying from rainbow duct tape to sticky foam. To learn about the circuits, we utilized copper tape, alligator clips, LEDs, and 9V batteries. We experimented with draining the batteries, turning the LEDs on, making motors move, and more! If your student is interested in learning about circuits at home, I recommend the extremely affordable EUDAX DIY Circuit Kit off of Amazon. It currently includes 6 DC motors, 86 plastic gears, battery clips, connectors, fans, and more!


Here is a recap of our experience with Every Kid Gets a Robot:


Their designs were very creative and looked awesome!



Takeaway


STEM Learning at Home Use the online resources that we utilized in class to continue learning at home:

  • SOLIDWORKS App for Kids: SOLIDWORKS® Apps for Kids is an ecosystem of apps that breaks down the design and engineering process into bite-sized pieces for creating, styling, designing, and expressing creativity in a fun-filled and easy-to-understand way.

  • Makecode: Bringing computer science to life for all students with fun projects, immediate results, and both block and text editors for learners at different levels.

  • GrabCAD: Post your own SOLIDWORKS App for Kids projects and see a great CAD library curated by an online design community.



As a part of the Engineering Design Club, we had an optional Saturday session to enter STEM themed competitions. My favorite competition that we entered was the Rockwell Automation You Make It Challenge.


Here is a list of future competitions that I recommend checking out to continue learning in STEM and improve the resume:


  • Future Engineers: A collection of innovation challenges for K–12 students. Previous challenges have included designing a 3D-printed tool for astronauts to use in space!

  • eCyberMission: STEM Competition for teams proposing solutions to real community issues with their projects. Put on by the Army Educational Outreach Program. (Grades 6-9)

  • Technovation Girls: A 12-week challenge where teams of young women work with mentors to identify a problem in their community and develop a mobile app and launch a startup (completing everything from coding to writing a business plan). (Girls ages 10-18). (Registration for the 2020 season will open soon)

  • LEGO Rebrick contests: A collection of official LEGO contests. Anyone over age 13 can participate by submitting digital photos and videos of their own custom LEGO creations online.

  • Broadcom MASTERS: Targeted at middle school students in grades 6th-8th, the Broadcom MASTERS is a national science, technology, engineering, and math competition that encourages the nation’s young scientists, engineers and innovators.

  • Thiniverse Challenges: If your student enjoys CAD, check for challenges. They're infrequent, but always exciting to be a part of.


Continue learning!


A huge thank you to SOLIDWORKS for your 3D printing and CAD support, Rob Maldonado, Neelesh Bollu, Brianne Boyer, and Dakshesh Daruri.

© 2020 by Danielle Boyer.