Reflections on a 3D Printed Jewelry Experience

As part of a grade 4 3D printed jewelry project, ES Art teacher Brittany McCrea had students describe and reflect on the process which she compiled into the video below.

The goal of the project was to create geometric jewelry to appeal to the current marketing trends in jewelry design. Since the students did not have materials such as metal or precious stones, the 3D printer provided an accessible way to manufacture their designs. Students used 3D design apps (123D Scuplt and 123D Creature) to design their pieces which could then be converted into a file to be printed on the 3D printer. As students reflected on the process, students were able to communicate how they applied problem solving skills to the design and manufacturing their jewelry pieces. Mrs. McCrea was delighted that students saw the 3D printer as a design tool and part of the process, not just a ‘cool’ machine. Their reflections proved an assessment of their understanding of the process.

Minecraft = Collaboration

Grade 5 students wove the theme of collaboration throughout the first elementary assembly of the 2014-15 school year and one of the highlights was a demonstration of collaboration through the use of Minecraft. Although Minecraft was developed as a ‘sandbox’ or open world game format, it has been embraced by teachers and students at SIS and around the world as an educational learning tool where students can develop and use content skills in addition to our SIS ESLRs such as collaboration and complex thinking . At the recent assembly, grade 5 teacher Kurt Callahan shared his video showing five grade 5 students collaboratively constructing a house using Minecraft in less than 4 minutes.


For more about Minecraft…
Minecraft in Education Resources
Educational Benefits of Minecraft
Ideas for Using Minecraft in the Classroom (Edutopia)

It’s not a Program it’s an Initiative


The purpose of having student self-directed learning(#geniushour) is to push intrinsic motivation to the forefront of teaching and learning.


Find a time to have time to initiate #geniushour @ your school. Here @ sis we were able to bind the #geniushour initiative to our Advisory program. For elementary teachers, all it takes is 1 hour a week that you need to find to roll out your #geniushour in your classroom. Its imperative that you stay consistent. You will be amazed at what your little ones can learn on their own.


This is what it looks like!

First, an opening keynote to all secondary staff with why,how, and what it will look like.

Next, allow your staff to find their interest that they could share with their students.

This way your students will buy into owning more of their own learning and to inquire more of their interests!

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idea of Gallit Zvi

Second, once all staff are on board and know what is expected of them, then you can roll out to all your students. Following the roll out to all your students you can send a letter home to their parents encouraging them to assist their child’s self directed learning process.

IMPORTANT! Branding it your own. We call our #geniushour initiative ~ AMPed @ SIS, Autonomous, Mastered, Purposeful education.

Third, document everything and have your students share their learning on their own blog or a shared blog.

Here are just some of the things that secondary students(grade 6 – 12) are wanting to learn.

What is love?

Explaining quantum mechanics like a 5 year old.

Set-up a Minecraft-Edu server and share the virtual learning space.

Videography & photography.

Coding and creating a video game. 

Middle school virtual newspaper.

Lego Mindstorms + Arduino boards to make robotic arms. 

For more about our self-directed learning initiative

Need help getting started in your classroom or whole school

 LiveBinder Geniushour curated by @joykirr & @AngelaMaiers

Inquiry and Innovation in the Classroom by A.J. Juliani

Twitter: #geniushour 



We hope this can be pushed, pulled, twisted in to your everyday curriculum. It’s our students learning, not ours!