STEM School Highlands Ranch third grade students learn 3D printing to design prosthetics for animals

Any dog out there is happy running outside.  However, the fact is, many dogs wouldn’t be able to run at all if it weren’t for Pawsthetics, an organization dedicated to designing 3D-printed prosthetics for animals.

STEM School Highlands Ranch is collaborating with Pawsthetics, so that students can learn how the design process works, and ultimately, build prosthetics for animals.

STEM teachers Simi Basu, Lauren Swihart and Cassandra Martin have held two separate Zoom sessions to date, where the students have had the opportunity to work with technology that assists in the design of prosthetic material.  Dr. Gregg Cannady, who is responsible for STEM’s collaboration and concept development is also assisting with the project, as students have the opportunity to learn from industry experts on the design and creation of animal prosthetics.

By the end of the first Zoom session, the third-grade students worked together as a group to design a ‘Spring scene’, but not because they are going to be building flowers with the 3D printer.  Instead, the exercise was designed to get the students comfortable with working as a group and using a computer program that is tied to the 3D printer, in preparation to use the technology to print real prosthetic innovations.

Some of the STEM students even came up with designs that impressed the experts, who were closely watching via Zoom, including Debra Wilcox, CEO of The 3D Printing Store, and Adam Hecht, Co-founder and designer at DiveDesign.

“Guys, I’m really, really impressed,” said Hecht.  “All of the things that you are considering, all of the different types of terrain and sizes and all of the functionality that you are building in, I mean that’s fantastic, definitely exceeding my expectations.”

To see the feature story about STEM’s collaboration with Pawsthetics, click the video below.

STEM students are learning from industry experts about how prosthetics are designed for pets
With the collaboration with Pawsthetics, STEM students are able to come up with their own designs
Comments are closed.