future is in Plastics! With more than 20,000 different types of plastics, it
is imperative that the material and its end product be tested before production.
In this project, students test the effect of stress on the chemical resistance
of acrylic. Next, students tap into their artistic ability while creating an
acrylic sculpture using readily available materials.
Activities allow students to experience the assembly line mass-production
process as they work individually and in teams to assemble simple parts and
paper trucks. Worksheets with math-related exercises and study questions included.
Building Peace Poles
Peace Poles are planted at schools, in parks, and at other places worldwide. Making small-scale versions is a great wood technology activity. It can be used with middle school students using hand tools and as an introduction to power tools with high schoolers. The activity appeared in the February 2013 issue of Tech Directions and has been reformatted. Full-size student procedures and a grading rubric for middle school students are included. Only $2.95.
Students learn about current casting technology by working with
room temperature vulcanizing (RTV) silicone and a two-part quick-hardening plastic.
Activity Introduces the Flatbed Router
Create awesome widgets. From sketching to CAD to CNC routing.
This activity for middle school through college levels shows students the unlimited
possibilities and applications of the CNC flatbed router.
activity that doesn't require the use of costly CNC (computer numerical controlled)
equipment teaches students how they would program a numerically controlled milling
machine. They also learn to decode a simple program and draw by hand the part
that it would create.
Students learn how the three
different types of conveyor systems work, along with their advantages and disadvantages.
Then, using simple materials, they build a compressed-air conveyor system and
test their design.
and Build Gumball Machines
Students get great experience with
research and design, problem solving, use of jigs and fixtures, and the details
of the mass production process.
Machine Elements in CAD
Introduce postsecondary CAD
students to elements of three-dimensional industrial design. Mini
project, only $2.95.
Layout and Planning
Discusses the different advantages
of process plants and product plants, and eight essential qualities of safe
and maximally efficient factories. Middle schoolers then design their own toy
factory layout. Project includes machine template, room patterns and accessories.
Mini project, only
Handy Metal Kitchen Tools
provides instructions for making a bottle opener, pizza cutter, meat tenderizer,
and salt and pepper shakers. Students gain experience with horizontal and vertical
mills, lathe, and drill press, while working with stainless steel, aluminum,
What a gear is, how are they
used, how they work and how to figure out gear ratios are all covered in this
project. Students then build their own machines and measure the gear ratio of
their gear train. Mini
project, only $2.95.
Design: Packaging Design
develop a solution to a packaging design problem by first creating a design
portfolio of sketches, then a technical drawing of the best solution, and finally
the package itself using simple, inexpensive materials.
Models: A Futuristic Product
With a variety of low-cost
materials (clay, cardboard, pieces of wood, components from discarded toys and
devices), students develop an idea for a product, then construct a model of
Guitar Stand Is Customizable
Handy stand built from sturdy, inexpensive plastic pipe is ideal
for guitarists—and rock band video players! Design can be altered to hold
from one to four guitars. Note: This project appeared in the October 2010 issue
of Tech Directions. It has been reformatted for easy classroom use.
Mini project, only $2.95.
Storage and Retrieval: A Mechanical Database
Students learn the principles
of computerized information storage and retrieval through a very inexpensive
activity that uses index cards and segments of wire hangers.
High Time to Make Sundials
With this activity, students
design a sundial in CAD, export the file to a CNC router to mill the dial’s
face and then learn and apply the mathematics needed to have it accurately track
Students learn how to make
isometric and orthographic drawings and flat pattern layouts, then build a puzzle
block using their new skills.
Angles and Lines
A brief discussion of the
key role that precision plays in modern manufacturing, plus three activities
that give students practice with solving for missing angles.
After learning the principles
of manufacturing design as determined by such criteria as product safety, reliability,
durability, comfort, styling, and cost, students build a cereal box marble maze.
Here’s an item that’s
easy to fabricate out of common materials. It can be either an individual project
or a production item that can easily be modified and mass produced.
Producing a Paper-Cup Dispenser
Mass-producing this paper-cup
dispenser teaches both mass-production procedures and woodworking skills.
Mini project, only
Middle schoolers learn about the basic types of materials and
their properties, how to measure and safely use basic tools, and how to design
and construct a prototype and final project using these materials.
Science Research: The Hygrometer
Students make a simple hygrometer using pieces of wood, wire,
rubber bands and staples.
'Nerf' Football Project Scores Points with Students
Students learn about chemistry, problem solving, and the importance of accurate measurement and precision timing while making flexible polyurethane footballs. The activity appeared in the November 2013 issue of Tech Directions and has been reformatted for easy classroom use. It contains additional photos.
is not an oxymoron! In the activity, students learn about chemistry and materials
processing technology, and use mathematics in the course of making a simple
basics and benefits of pneumatics—a key factor involved in today’s
industrial robots—along with an introduction to the components of a
pneumatic system (regulator, pressure gauge, valve, and cylinder). Also
includes instructions for constructing a teacher-made pneumatic mockup board
that can be used to demonstrate the technology plus question and activity
project, only $2.95.
Students learn the design
process used in industry and use CAD to create appropriate packaging for products
of varying shapes.
design process is not a crap shoot. A big part of solving problems is asking
the right questions. This project describes how to make a set of wooden dice
that ask students the how, when, where, why and more about designing manufacturing
products and processes.
Building and operating a
remote manipulator from simple components (syringes, screws, nuts, wood, plastic
tubing) teaches students how robots function, as well as the principles of hydraulics.
students learn about the history of automation -- from slow-moving assembly
lines to computer-integrated manufacturing (CIM). Then their mouths will water
they work as part of a team that simulates the computer control of a factory
assembly line. The end result is a delicious, custom-made sundae for everyone!
Skateboard Project That Really Rocks!
students design, construct and decorate their own skateboards in an activity
that teaches about the machines and processes involved in working with plastics.
Work with legendary scientist
Piet Hien’s Soma cube gives students experience with visualization, technical
drawing, mathematics, manufacturing, research and more. Project includes background
information, plus 10 hands-on, minds-on activities.
to the Rescue
The use of statistics and process controls is too often overlooked
in educating students. In this activity, high school students with some background
in materials processing advance their knowledge by determining whether or not
a manufacturing process works well.
In the course of making wooden puzzles, students learn about
the various roles involved in industrial production (procurement, product engineering,
process engineering, plant engineering, personnel management and administration),
as well as about such concepts as prototype, quality control, and industrial
Students set up, perform
and analyze time-motion studies like those performed in industry.
Mini project, only
uses inexpensive 2 x 4 lumber and is well suited for mass production.
Jigs and Fixtures: A Design Brief
on the use of jigs and fixtures in the manufacturing process, plus design of
jigs and fixtures to be used in student manufacture of a Ball Drop Game.
activity makes an excellent mass-production project. Mini
project, only $2.95.
A clever wood project teaches students about rotary routing jigs
and mass production techniques—and provides them with a tool for slicing
Back to the Main
DEMAND CLASSROOM PROJECTS
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