Penwortham Primary School recently participated in the CREATE Education 3D printer loan scheme and used this as an opportunity to engage the whole school community, then in a single of fundraising week raised over £2000 to purchase their own 3D printer. In the second of our two part blog, Elaine Lambert the Mathematics and Computing Lead Teacher explains how the loan printer was used to fundraise.

Over the past few years we have worked hard to develop our computing skills in areas such as coding, researching, networks and data handling etc and we were now looking for the next step to increase our excitement for Computing.

I have been leading a project this year with a cluster of schools in the local area as a CAS hub school and was looking for ways to further develop our computing provision in an exciting way. Whilst planning a unit on 3D design for our Year 5 class, I contacted CREATE Education to see if a 3D printer would be available to enhance my unit. You can read about our experience and activities with the loan printer in part one of our blog.

During the loan period, we ended up working on a project to create signage for around the school in order to promote our exciting computing whenever visitors came to our school. Each class were given particular signs that needed designing and making and the children worked in groups to create these. Having made these prints has allowed us to promote the printer whenever parents come into school and they have been regularly talked about.

Whilst we had the printer on loan, I carried out a demonstration for our PTFA with the intention of putting it on their wish list for the future. I also mentioned to them, that I had planned to purchase one for our cluster of schools for us to share and then we could print some items to sell at a fundraising event in order to raise money to buy one.

They were so impressed that they decided to hold a sponsored event in order to raise money to purchase our own. Prior to the sponsored event, I held an ‘open-house’ event and invited parents etc to come along to see the printer in action and see (and try out) the software the children had been using along with the prints we had created. This was attended by over 80 people overall!

A few weeks later, we held a ‘marathon week’ event where children ran a targeted distance to raise the money. Myself and our Headteacher even ran the distance of a marathon over the week!

We were incredibly successful with this event and raised over £2,000! This was above and beyond my expectations which goes to show how much excitement the 3D printer caused at our school! At the end of the event, I printed each class a medal on the printer!

All in all, the loan scheme has been a very positive experience, causing enough excitement in our school community to enable us to fundraise and purchase a printer outright. The level of excitement of the children and staff was incredible. Computing has been a real strength of our school and I feel it will help us as a lead school in the area.

The CREATE Education Project has been a positive experience. Having the 3D printer has shown us how to enhance and enrich our Design Technology and overall Computing provision at our school. We very much look forward to owning our own printer and delving deep into its many capabilities!

The CREATE Education Project would like to thank Elaine Lambert from Penwortham Primary School for sharing this blog with us.

In The Classroom

If you don’t currently have access to a 3D printer, why not try the CREATE 3D printer loan scheme for yourself, it could inspire your school community to raise funds for your own, just like at Penwortham. You can also check out our 3D printer Funding Resource for a downloadable guide and details of available education grants.

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