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Feedback to my CAD lesson plans for secondary school students, grade 10-12, girls

daniel_chowdaniel_chow Member Posts: 108 ✭✭
Hello everyone, 

I'm a secondary school teacher here in Vancouver BC. After looking at several CAD products, I've decided to use onShape in my class to teach the basics of CAD. The reasons are obvious, its free for our needs, I don't have to install any software in my computer lab (I'm the IT guy at this school too), students can use onShape at home or any comp with the internet and a web browser, they don't have to transfer their files back and forth from home to school.

This particular class is for girls only in grades 10-12. Most of them have never heard of CAD.
We are starting from scratch. 

I've been developing some a series of lesson plans to introduce my class to the world of CAD. I would appreciate any feedback you could offer about my lessons plans (all of them are work in progress): 

Lesson 1 - What is CAD?
Lesson 2 - onShape pt 1 - Intro
Lesson 3 - onShape pt 2 - Parts Studio

The goal of lesson #1 is to gain interest and an understanding of how this technology fits into their own world. The first lesson attempts to establish a link to their own lives.

I plan to give this set of 3 lessons to the entire class. Then we will build a simple object in onShape. They will learn the basics from the hands-on building of this object. After that, a number of girls will choose this as their path and continue to learn more advanced features and functionality (actually some already have). Others will continue with other streams such as programming, photography / other ICT stuff. 

I should also mention that this is a ICT / Programming course in a computer lab. We have a small 3D Reprap / Repetier / RAMP based 3D printer. In the future I hope to add or put together a CNC milling machine. We also use microcontrollers such as Arduino Uno / Minis and Raspberry Pi's to "make" things in our class. The goal is to eventually be able to design / print our own parts that we need to complete projects. 

I would appreciate any feedback you could provide. Thank in advance! 


  • pete_yodispete_yodis OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 666 ✭✭✭
    @daniel_chowI haven't looked at your lessons yet, but .... well done.  I've been talking to friends and students at several local high schools and at least one college and they all have expressed a lot of interest.  I'll try to find some time and look these over.   
  • pete_yodispete_yodis OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 666 ✭✭✭
    @nav @daniel_chow Very timely piece they just put out.  So much interest here.  Onshape really is lowering the barriers.
  • navnav Member Posts: 258 ✭✭✭✭
    Hi @daniel_chow I used  to teach CAD at the university "engineering students"  my piece of advise show your highschool students there is a tool like this out there and that can be used for x or y purposes, don´t use OS Samples use your own, simpler, something they are all familiar with. 
    Nicolas Ariza V.
    Indaer -- Aircraft Lifecycle Solutions
  • shanshanshanshan Member Posts: 147 ✭✭✭
    daniel_chow Onshape is a very good tool for engineering students, there are many tutorials and teaching videos in Onshape homepage, maybe you can make use of them for your teaching courseware.

    1.PNG 131.7K
  • andrew_troupandrew_troup Member, Mentor Posts: 1,584 ✭✭✭✭
    I've only got through lesson 1, but I'm impressed already.

    Education (I reckon) is not a matter of filling empty vessels with knowledge, but of kindling natural curiosity to spontaneously combust.

    Your material looks to me to have the right stuff to do the latter.

    If this happens with the right sorts of input, nothing much can prevent their future development, as they will voraciously seek their own fuel .

    Lucky kids !
  • 3dcad3dcad Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 2,440 PRO
    @daniel_chow  Wow, that Video: What it can do was amazing - I would like to immediately join your classes =)

    I remember when I was introduced Solid Edge back in late millennium (engineering school) - I was immediately caught by visual way of working.
    Those days websites were best done by text editor and autocad was THE cad for designers.. 

    I have no teaching skills but if I tend to sell software by starting from scratch. I ask from prospect what are they going to do with 3d cad and try to come up with quick model as we speak. Simple modeling is very easy and fast if you don't care about dimensions, just quickly create some real world piece from scratch in front of 'autocad' people and they just can't stop smiling.

    I hate when representatives show their fine tuned prepared parametric models which they don't even know how to create in first place and try to convince that software suits for your needs even though this particular model is gearbox for bmw and you are planning to work with plastic toys..

    Sorry for going a bit offtopic
  • daniel_chowdaniel_chow Member Posts: 108 ✭✭
    @nav @daniel_chow Very timely piece they just put out.  So much interest here.  Onshape really is lowering the barriers.

    onShape is a game changer. Words cannot describe this incredible tool. 
  • daniel_chowdaniel_chow Member Posts: 108 ✭✭
    Thanks for all the responses guys, I've completed a week of lessons at the secondary school level for my senior class. Things went incredibly well! No glitches whatsoever, and the girls were able to "do stuff" :) My lessons are based on the Essentials Training at onShape

    I'm going to continue to refine my lesson plans, here they are if anyone else wants to use them. I feel these are suitable for high school to give people a "crash course" into the world of CAD using onShape. 

    Lesson 1 - What is CAD?
    Lesson 2 - onShape pt 1 - Intro
    Lesson 3 - onShape pt 2 - Parts Studio
    Lesson 4 - onShape pt 3 - Multipart [NEW LESSON] 

    Here are some pics: 

  • pete_yodispete_yodis OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 666 ✭✭✭
    edited November 2015
    @daniel_chow Keep up the fantastic work.  I've been experimenting with my own students.  This little guy is 5...  They are so excited at this age.  Why not?  Who are we to tell them what they can't learn.

  • viruviru Member, Developers Posts: 619 ✭✭✭✭
    @daniel_chow , Nice work keep it up :)

  • brucebartlettbrucebartlett Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 2,004 PRO
    That's awesome @daniel_chow, great work and thanks for shaing
    Engineer ı Product Designer ı Onshape Consulting Partner
    Twitter: @onshapetricks  & @babart1977   
  • steve_maiettasteve_maietta Member Posts: 32 EDU
    Im a teacher as well (HighSchool, NJ, USA) and the kids are really enjoying OnShape!   The line from above about education not filling empty buckets, but sparking kindling so it spontaneously combusts, is spot on.  Tough to do but when it happens its the best..  I'd love to check out the vids you created, but cant view the video? At youtube I get this popup:

    This video contains content from SME, who has blocked it in your country on copyright grounds"

  • dave_halseth27809dave_halseth27809 Member Posts: 3
    Bravo! Bravo!!!!   Encore!  Encore!!!

    Nicely done!

    I heard the CTO of the US ( Megan Smith ) speak recently:
    Everyone who reads this should invest 2 minutes and 35 seconds to listen to this clip

    And if you have an hour and six minutes to invest ( everyone who reads this should invest that much in our future )
    "megan smith" and "khan academy"
    and watch the 1 hr 6 min video.  Besides the education of our youth it also gives considerable insight as to what the CTO is all about an the interesting proposal that tech CEOs should be willing to give four years of their time to be CTOs in the future.  And much more...

    I  think it is really important that more women are included in technical fields of study.

    You're doing good and important work!

    Dave H in SF Bay Area

  • francisco_gomez863francisco_gomez863 Member Posts: 1 EDU
    @daniel_chow I am new to this and will be teaching my students CAD. I was going through your lessons and they seem great. Lesson 3 will not open for me. Can you please email it to me at [email protected]

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