Level: Intermediate/(Middle School - 7th Grade)
Resources:Tinkercad.com, Pasteboard or card stock paper
The concept of working a 2D material into a 3D form was first explored by making complex origami boxes. My prototype of a water bottle was made ahead of time to show the goal of the project. By 7th grade, the majority of students are quite familiar with 3D design using Tinkercad. Drawing out ideas in sketchbooks were encouraged so students use Tinkercad with a preconceived visualization and to document their work.
- With this slideshow, the theme and goal of the project was introduced by exploring the anatomy of a bottle (slide 3) and historical videos (slide 6). Supplemental links:
- In their sketchbooks, students copy the bottle diagram and draw 3 different bottle designs. And the best design is chosen for the project. Students can share out which bottle design they chose and why.
- The profile line of the bottle neck is identified from the sketch. A demo of how to re-create this profile in Tinkercad using an EXTRUSION object is shown and a visual guide is handed out. (The guide directions are written using Tinkercad’s Legacy interface. The extrusion object has been ported over to the Beta version now.) This is another slideshow to help explain the extrusion object.
- A YouTube video helps students better visualize how to array the unique extrusion object to create the top portion of the bottle. Pointing out the double featured rotation tool is very helpful.
- As the students design the bottle neck, they also need to create the base. This can be done using any of the other objects in Tinkercad. A size limitation of 6cm diameter was given to keep the 3D prints reasonable. Check to see that the arrayed objects are overlapping enough to print a solid object.
- Meanwhile, using their sketchbooks students begin drafting designs for the bottle label (slides 7, .
- Once a draft is ready, students need to refer to their Tinkercad design to determine the diameter needed to figure out the circumference of the bottle. The circumference will become the length of the label paper (slides 9, 10).
- Students cut out poster board or oak tag paper based on measurements taken from the circumference. Extra 1cm paper material is needed to overlap when gluing. The final copy of the label is drawn and colored.
- Once all the pieces are ready, students can begin assembling their water bottle prototypes. Curling the stiff paper might be tricky. Use the edge of the desk to curl in small increments.
- Sometimes a collar is needed because there isn’t an even surface on the bottle neck to glue the label on to. Here is a slideshow of how to make a collar.
- Students can self-assess and reflect on the process of creating their prototype water bottle.