David Shircliff is the Technology Education teacher for Loudoun County schools. He has been teaching for 26 years, and loves when students have the “ah-ha” moment when they figure something out for themselves.
Mark Willis is the Tech Ed/Pre Engineering Teacher at Margaret Bell Middle School in Waynesburg, PA.
In the Beginning
Willis had never attempted 3D printing before getting the Afinia 3D Printer. “When it arrived, I just started printing things, learning from trial and error.
The printer was pretty easy to use. Afinia also sent their Vice President, John Westrum, to talk with teachers, walk them through how to use the machine, and demonstrate tricks for printing. It was a great gesture and I found it to be very helpful.“ [Read more…]
Dr. Thornburg is the founder and Director of Global Operations for the Thornburg Center and an award-winning Futurist, author, and consultant. He recently authored “The Invent to Learn Guide to 3D Printing in the Classroom: Recipes for Success” with Norma Thornburg and Sara Armstrong.
Learning In Style
Studies have shown that students have different learning styles. Some may learn visually, some aurally, and some kinetically. Dr. Thornburg realizes that students all learn differently, also recognizing that “students learn best when they are constructors of their own knowledge.” For this reason, Dr. Thornburg has focused on creating materials that assist educators in encouraging their students to construct knowledge and “become comfortable with learning to become makers.” [Read more…]
Kaye Ebelt is an inspired educator and life-long learner who has a BA in Elementary Education, ME in Computer technology, and MS in Science Education. She is currently an Albert Einstein Fellow, serving as the Directorate for Engineering at the National Science Foundation. Ebelt also participated in NASA’s MicroGX and Reduced Gravity Flight in 2011.
The Power of Passion
It is clear from Kaye Ebelt’s background that she has a passion for learning. During her interview, we learned how she is passing that passion on to other teachers and students. As the Directorate for Engineering at the National Science Foundation, Ebelt provides her expertise forming STEM education programs. When we asked how Ebelt was awarded the Directorate position, she admitted, “It started with me wanting to know what a 3D printer was. A fellow teacher connected me with John Westrum from Afinia, and he set me up with a printer. When I got it, it was the only thing my students and I focused on for two months. They would skip lunch and recess to print!”
Ebelt recognizes the impact that teaching has on students. “When you have a teacher who is so passionate about what they are dong, you get excited about it. A teacher is supposed to share their experiences. When a teacher shares their passion for STEM, their students are more likely to go into a STEM career.” [Read more…]