STEM PD: Innovative Additive Manufacturing Workshop

frc 2016 titan robotics
WSH Titan Robotic’s Athena Printer at the Traverse City FRC Tournament.

The 3D Printing PLC has partnered with Square One Network and the Traverse Bay Area Intermediate School District to host a workshop to build your own 3D printer Traverse City. Teachers throughout Michigan will convene to build 3D printers that they will take back to their classroom.

When: July 18-21, 2016

Where: TBAISD Career Tech Center, 880 Parson Road, Traverse City MI 49686

Cost: $500

Workshop Description:

Over the course of four days, two-person teacher teams will build their own RepRap 3D printers, capable of printing most of its own components, to take back to school for student use and reproduction.  This is cutting edge technology developed and delivered by experts in the field.  Pedagogy is “constructivist,” best teaching and learning techniques will be modeled.  It is suggested that each team be made up of a combination of STEM, CTE, and/or arts educators, from elementary, middle or high school levels.  Teacher teams will also participate in the development and design of curriculum and brainstorm potential STEM integration of this open-source hardware project.

Overall registration is now closed. However, the 3D Printing PLC has four slots saved for our scholarship teachers. See below for more information.

Workshop Details:

        All participants must attend all sessions.

  • Lunches and morning coffee are included in the workshop all four days, Travel, lodging, and meals are the responsibility of participants.
  • Commitment fee is $500 per person. Each team of two will leave with two fully functioning, self-built rapid prototype machines for classroom or club use. Space is limited to eight teams of two.
  • SCHECHs may be available – details to follow.
  • ALL participants MUST participate in a pre-workshop conference call.  During this call, laptop system requirements for the workshop will be detailed, software downloads and homework will be assigned.  District provided laptops must be “unlocked”.


The RepRap project is an initiative to develop a 3D printer that can print most of its own components. RepRap (short for self-replicating rapid prototyper) uses a variant of fused deposition modeling, an additive manufacturing technique. As an open design, all of the designs produced by the project are released under a free software license, the GNU General Public License.

Due to the self-replicating ability of the machine, authors envision the possibility to cheaply distribute RepRap units to people and communities, enabling them to create (or download from the Internet) complex products without the need for expensive industrial infrastructure including scientific equipment. They intend for the RepRap to demonstrate evolution in this process as well as for it to increase in number exponentially. Participants will build Michigan Tech’s Open Sustainability Technology Lab’s Delta printer, which is RepRap derived from the Rostock printer.

TBAISD Scholarship:

Philip Leete and Drea Weiner went to a 3D printer workshop in Jackson Michigan where they built their own Athena 3D Printers. Kim LeBlanc was one of the awesome facilitators.

The 3D Printing PLC has partnered with TBAISD to provide four teachers with the opportunity to attend this workshop at a discounted cost. Each scholarship will cover $400 of the cost. Teachers and/or their schools will be responsible for $100 of the workshop. This workshop was originally $1,000.

Submission Deadline: 11:59 p.m. May 27, 2016

To be considered for the scholarship please fill out the online survey (click here)This grant is managed by Drea Weiner. She can answer your questions by phone ((231) 922-6560) or email (

This opportunity is available for all teachers within TBAISD. Priority will be given to teachers who demonstrate the need of a 3D printer for their classroom or school, have established project ideas, have a sustainable plan for purchasing replacement parts and filament, and engaged school administration.

We are most interested in innovative teachers who are excited about 3D printing and the educational opportunity it provides your students. Your prior knowledge of 3D printing is less important than your willingness to jump in and give it a try! However, this is not an “entry” level workshop, participants should have working knowledge and abilities with hand tool assembly and be able to follow complex written directions and diagrams independently.

If awarded, your school/classroom would be responsible for funding the purchase of the filament, glue and other miscellaneous materials for your printer. This application DOES NOT register you for the workshop. You will still be required to fill out Square One Network’s registration paperwork which can be found here.

Due to the cost/time that may be involved, you MUST receive permission from your building principal BEFORE submitting this application. They will be required to write you a support letter for Square One Network.

Athena in the Grand Traverse Region:

We currently have four educators within our region who have participated in this workshop and are using their machines in the classroom.

“This workshop helped me to understand how a 3D printer works,” said Drea Weiner. “There is a lot of troubleshooting that goes along with 3D printing which is both the value and the challenge of using this technology in the classroom. Knowing how the printer works minimized the frustration and maximized my learning capacity.”

Any questions can be answered by:

Drea Weiner
(231) 922-6560