Project-Based Learning with 3D Technology | PD for San Diego Schools

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Makers Empire is inviting expressions of interest from schools in San Diego to undertake its evidenced-based Project-Based Learning with 3D Technology professional development course.

Project-Based Learning with 3D Technology is designed to develop sustainable and scalable models of professional learning that lead to effective implementation of maker pedagogies, STEM learning outcomes and improvement in students’ critical, creative and Design Thinking abilities. The course encourages learning across STEM disciplines by supporting teachers to engage students in exciting and challenging learning connected to solving real-world challenges using Design Thinking.

Project-Based Learning with 3D Technology (Learning by Design in Australia) was the subject of a Macquarie Univerisity Makerspace Education in Primary Schools research study, which revealed compelling evidence of benefits for primary educators.


Makers Empire has delivered its Project-Based Learning with 3D Technology course to hundreds of satisfied Australian primary schools.

Participating students will:

  • Meet international curriculum standards including Next Generation Science Standards with a particular focus on Engineering
  • Develop their creativity and important critical thinking, Design Thinking and digital skills.
  • Learn how to solve real-world problems with Design Thinking.

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Participating teachers will:

  • Complete 20 hours of internationally recognised professional development.
  • Develop pedagogical approaches that enable students to develop deep technological knowledge as well as critical, creative and Design Thinking skills.
  • Be supported to design innovative learning programs that provide authentic, meaningful contexts for students to engage in STEM and maker-based learning using 3D design and printing.
  • Activate the potential of 3D technologies to develop and enhance students’ 21st-century learning skills.
  • Become more comfortable with technology and more collaborative and flexible in their teaching.

Project-Based Learning with 3D Technology Inclusions


  • 20 hours of professional learning
  • 2 face-to-face PD days
  • 1 showcase day to share your learning
  • 2-hour online, on-demand PD course
  • Project management and reports
  • For up to three teachers per school


  • Easy to use 3D software
  • Class management tools
  • 150 curriculum-aligned lesson plans
  • Built-in student assessment
  • Training
  • Ongoing support
  • 12-month subscription
  • For all teachers and students in a school


• 2 x FlashForge Inventor IIs 3D printers
• 10kgs of biodegradable PLA filament
• Online hardware training
• Online hardware support
• Shipping included

Project-Based Learning with 3D Technology Dates

Face-to-face PD days: Friday March 27th and Friday April 3rd.
Showcase day: May.

San Diego venues TBC.

Evidence-Based Learning Ensures Success

Makers Empire’s Project-Based Learning with 3D Technology (Learning by Design course in Australia) was the subject of a recent Macquarie University research study on makerspaces in primary school settings.

The research study examined how maker activities using 3D design and 3D printing technology could enhance learning and teaching outcomes.

The recently published research study report reveals the compelling benefits of this type of learning for primary educators and showed that makerspaces can be highly effective at developing children’s creativity, critical thinking, design thinking and digital skills.

Students were highly engaged with the 3D technology, and the idea of solving genuine design challenges – it helped boost their confidence and resilience when dealing with setbacks, particularly for those less capable students.

Teachers became more comfortable with technology, and more collaborative and flexible in their teaching.

All of the 24 classroom teachers who participated in the focus group expressed a desire to integrate 3D design-based makerspaces into their future classes.

Videos from Previous Showcase Days in Australia

Testimonials from Participating teachers

“This was the best PD that I have been involved in for ages… This whole project has been inspiring for teachers and students in empowering students to become changemakers. Our students were so engaged and excited about solving a real-world problem… The fact that they could see they could help someone through their own design, meant their learning was authentic and valued.”

“I was a little hesitant at first, but as soon as I began working on my project it became very exciting…I love learning about new things particularly in the area of Technology and design and this was the perfect opportunity. I have learnt more in the last 4 months than I have for a long time. Thank you!”


“One of the good things was, we were all learning with the children and along the way we communicated that with them. At one point, I was actually in a classroom last week and I couldn’t get the shape to sit flat… And I tried and tried and tried, and the child was getting frustrated. She could see that I was finding it challenging as well, which is really good for them to see that. And I said, why don’t you go into [the other teacher’s] room because I know that she is really good at attaching the shapes together. And to see that I had asked for help from another teacher, I think was really powerful for the child to see that.”


“Thanks for the opportunity to be involved in the project. It has built my own knowledge as well as my capacity to share with my staff. I am currently running 6 3D printing projects this term!”

“I would like to say thank you to the team. It has been a wonderful opportunity to be involved in this project and something my students have learnt a lot from. The support along the way has been very helpful and prompt, and that has made working with technology (which can be frustrating) more pleasurable.”


“I think the lesson plans are fantastic for teachers – especially those who may find the hardest part being the inspiration/ideas on where to start…The Makers Empire app is a MASSIVE value add to the learning. We could have taught children how to design an iPad stand, learn what makes a structure strong, what are strong ‘shapes’, how to keep an item balanced etc etc etc – but the ability to create their design in 3D AND then print it makes the learning so much more obtainable and relevant/real.”


“Congratulations to you all on a fabulous 3D Printing Showcase at Grange Primary School. It was an absolute privilege to be able to celebrate and share in such fantastic models of teaching and learning. We were completely blown away by the diverse displays, presentations and stories that have made the 3D Printing in Primary Schools project such a success. Every story showed how you’ve been able to integrate 3D technology into teaching and learning across the curriculum. More importantly, every story showed how the technology is a tool, helping to develop critical & creative thinking, design thinking and powerful learner dispositions.”

Videos Created by Previous Participants

Express your Interest in Project-Based Learning with 3D

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