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Badger School receives 3-D printer


The Badger School District has another option when it comes to learning after earning a grant to purchase a new 3-D printer. Badger teacher and former robotics team advisor, Mike Coltom presented and talked about the new 3-D printer, including showing some parts made using it, at the Badger School Board November 14 meeting.   

Badger student Emma VonEnde, her father Jedd, and  Coltom helped write and apply for a Round Up grant to help fund the purchase of this printer. They were granted $1900 for the printer and the school received the machine in mid-October.

Coltom has already been meeting with current Badger Robotics team advisor Val Truscinski on how to train the robotics team members on how to use the 3-D printer to build prototypes. As Coltom explained, the school will use this printer in areas outside robotics. For example, Coltom plans to allow students to use the printer in his Introduction to Engineering and Design class to design parts. 

“It’s for the school. It’s a school product,” Coltom said.

The Badger School, Coltom said, is entering its eleventh year of working with “Project Lead the Way,” or teaching 3-D design. This printer now will allow students a more tactile way to design parts, allowing them to actually see if a design functions as intended. 

They did apply for more funds than awarded under the grant, but did earn enough to purchase the Afinia 3-D printer, totaling $1875. They plan to apply for more funds in the next grant round to help purchase a computer that specially goes with it.

As Coltom explained, this 3-D printer is an inexpensive and quick way to build a part, one without much of a ceiling.

“It’s pretty much limited by the imagination,” Coltom said following the board meeting.

To see what other topics were addressed at the meeting, read the November 16 issue of The Tribune in print or online.

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