Balancing Bats by Greg Zumwalt

This week we are featuring this pair of balancing bats shared on YouMagine by Greg Zumwalt.

This object is a good example of how 3D printing can be utilised to make practical classroom resources that help students to visualise a new concept. After demonstrating how the bats balance on the point of their centre of mass, students could use the “Research It” activity to learn more about the centre of mass and how to find the centre of mass of various regular and irregular shapes. Students could then follow this up with the “Explain It” activity

Following this, students could investigate centre of mass with this simple practical activity. First they could use a CAD tool to draw and 3D print regular or irregular shapes. They could work out the centre of mass of each shape and then balance them on the cone to see if they are correct.

Useful Links

  • Download the 3D Print files and learn more about this object from YouMagine: Balancing Bats

Suggested Activities

The Geometric Coaster works well as an object to use with the following Object of the Week activities:

  • Describe & Draw It
  • Research It
  • Explain It

Download the Object of the Week Teacher Guide and accompanying resources to find out more.

About Object of the Week

“Object of the Week” is a fully resourced open-ended classroom project developed by the Create Education Project to provide regular opportunities throughout the year for students to explore the world of 3D printing.

A series of stand-alone classroom activities have been developed to support the project. The activities allow students to:

  • use their imagination
  • develop speaking and listening skills
  • develop descriptive and creative writing skills
  • be creative
  • develop research, evaluation and presentation skills
  • explore future careers
  • learn how real life problems are solved
  • develop their own solutions

The open-ended activities are designed to be cross-curricular, for use across of range of ages/levels and weekly objects are selected to cover a range of applications and subject areas. Some objects may provide a platform for introducing or expanding on a specific topic area or as a springboard to a class project. Ideas for taking it further will be provided where applicable.

Resources include a comprehensive Teacher Guide which provides an overview of each activity and suggestions for how to deliver the activity in class. PowerPoint Interactive Classroom Activity Slides and a set of Student Worksheets are also available to support the activities. These resources can be downloaded by clicking the links in the right column.

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