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Make Magazine provides a number of DIY projects for students

In an earlier post, we showed you how making a 3D model of yourself was possible with the help of some free software. The original article for this Do-It-Yourself idea came from Make Magazine, and there are plenty more projects to keep students interested and involve them in STEM skills that may translate into a future career in an in-demand manufacturing job.

A recent survey of Make reveals projects students will enjoy doing, all the while learning valuable skills. Keep in mind that difficulty and suitable grade level will vary.

Paper Robot Hand

Difficulty: Easy
Grades 1-6

This project could easily be completed in a classroom setting starting in the first grade. Don’t let the name fool you. This project involves the most basic of materials and can really give young students a thrill to make.

iPhone Rocket for data collection

Difficulty: Moderate
Grades 7-12

This one is a little risky only in as much as it requires an iPhone 4s or later to be attached to a rocket. Many classes experiment with rockets, which can be a great learning tool to teach students about physics. This project allows for even more learning as data is taken while the rocket is in flight and can be analyzed once it’s back on the ground with some downloadable software, which can be found on the instructions page at Make.

Introduction to Electronics

Difficulty: Easy
Grades 7-12

Make’s project page has a number of great beginning projects that introduce students to electronics. Here’s one to get you started. It can accompany a learning segment that involves electricity to show students hands-on how these principles work.

Star Trails

Difficulty: Moderate
Grades 7-12

The Star Trails project can be used to combine a number of sciences and photography. Note that the final experiment will have to be completed at night, but produces a magnificent picture. This project can also be a good introduction to Arduino technology and coding as well as astronomy to demonstrate the rotation of the Earth. It does require a DSLR camera, but most high schools have access to at least one. Free software is also required, which again is available via the Make link.

This is just a tiny sampling of the available projects at Make. Many more can be modified or used in their entirety to teach students fundamentals of science and engineering.

For more information, visit http://www.dreamitdoitnebraska.com.

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