At Makers Empire, we’re always thrilled to learn about the new ways teachers are using Makers Empire’s 3D learning program to teach across the curriculum. Here are 10 inspiring real-life examples of teachers using Makers Empire in the classroom. Click on the linked headings for a case study and teacher interview explaining exactly how teachers implemented these ideas in their classroom.

1. Design an International Space Station storage container

At Maplewood Intermediate, teacher Lisa Hatton gave 5th grade her students the challenge to use Makers Empire to design a storage container that could be used aboard the International Space Station. Students had to apply what they learned about the ISS and the difference in gravity on the ISS compared to Earth when creating their designs. By working in groups the students were able to collaborate and devise unique solutions to the storage problem in zero gravity!

2. Identify and solve a community problem

At St. Stephens School, the 6th-grade students were asked to think about their community and identify problems that people in their community might be facing. They identified that their teacher’s young daughter had a problem with her legs, and had to wear special straps on them. However, the straps would constantly fall off. Using Makers Empire the students set out to solve this problem by creating a specially designed clip that would hold the straps up. And they were successful! The students created a clip that was able to hold the straps up perfectly!

3. Learn with the buddy system

The senior students at Fulham North Primary used Makers Empire as an opportunity to mentor the younger students at their school. The experienced senior students were paired with a younger schoolmate and showed them how to use the Makers Empire software. The older students learned valuable teaching skills and the younger ones were introduced to the fantastic potential of 3D design and printing technology. One of the first projects the senior mentors helped the younger students with was creating a personalized Christmas ornament to give to their parents!

4. Represent your family’s heritage

Second-grade students from Mont Claire Elementary School were asked to design a 3D object in Makers Empire that represented their family’s heritage. The students had been learning about their heritage, and this was a very personal and fun task where the students could think deeply and synthesize everything they had learned about their family. Every student was given the opportunity to express their unique family history through a thoughtfully designed 3D object.

5. Create a stationery holder

Elanora State School students were asked to create their very own stationery holder that would keep their essential supplies organized neatly on their desks. Students first created their design in a 2D drawing. Then the students used Makers Empire to transform that 2D drawing into a 3D design. Each student created a unique way to store their stationery supplies.

6. Write and film a story

Year 1 students from Scotch College Perth and Presbyterian Ladies College Perth used Makers Empire 3D to enhance their communication, collaboration, storytelling and character development skills. Each student used their imagination to design a character in the 3D design app, which they then printed out. They partnered with another student and used iPads to film a story that featured their 3D designed character. This project took storytelling to a whole new level!

7. Prepare for a natural disaster

While learning about the devastation of natural disasters, the students at Scots College were challenged to design something that would help communities affected by a natural disaster. This cumulative task began with students investigating different types of disasters and the specific problems they create. Then, using Makers Empire, students designed a solution to the problem they had researched. Once they had created designs, students reflected on their product and its usefulness, encouraging students to view their solution in a real-world context.

8. Design a country flag

Kindergarten students at St. Ann School harnessed the power of 3D design when learning about the American political system during the most recent US election. Adding this hands-on element to the discussion of social and political systems made a potentially dry topic engaging for these young learners.

9. Design a space rover for a specific planet

At Redlands School, when the year 5 students were learning about the solar system they were given a special challenge. They had to use Makers Empire to design a space rover that would function on the planet of their choice and explain how it would transmit information back to Earth. Students needed a solid understanding of the geographical features of the planet they chose in order to create a well-designed rover. Plus, through the explanation of their rover’s design and how it would transmit information the students practiced their writing skills. Preparing the next generation of space explorers!

10. Create models of extinct animals 

Kate Tyrwhitt from St. Michael’s School has created some fantastic 3D printing lesson plans, and one of our favorites is when she asked students to create 3D designs of Australia’s indigenous megafauna. Getting students interested in history and the distant past can be challenging because the concepts are all abstract. Kate used Makers Empire to bring the ancient megafauna of Australia into the classroom and engage her students with a hands-on experience.


Makers Empire: Better Learning By Design

Makers Empire helps K-8 teachers teach Design Thinking, STEM and 21st-century learning skills using 3D printing. Our pioneering 3D solutions for schools include 3D modelling software, over 150 lesson plans aligned with international standards and professional development. With Makers Empire, engaged students learn how to solve real-world problems and make their world better.