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Hands on STEM Learning at Home with 3D-Printed Manipulatives

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Conference

2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access

Location

Virtual Conference

Publication Date

July 26, 2021

Start Date

July 26, 2021

End Date

July 19, 2022

Conference Session

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Tagged Topic

NSF Grantees Poster Session

Page Count

11

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/37238

Download Count

20

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Paper Authors

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Eric Davishahl Whatcom Community College Orcid 16x16 orcid.org/0000-0001-9506-2658

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Eric Davishahl holds an MS degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Washington and currently serves as professor and engineering program coordinator at Whatcom Community College in northwest Washington state. Eric has been teaching community college engineering transfer students for 20 years. His teaching and research interests include developing, implementing and assessing active learning instructional strategies and course-based undergraduate research experiences. Eric has been a member of ASEE since 2001. He currently serves as awards chair for the Pacific Northwest Section and was the recipient of the 2008 Section Outstanding Teaching Award.

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Lee Singleton Whatcom Community College

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Lee Singleton is a professor at Whatcom Community College, in Bellingham, WA. He holds a BS in mathematics from Harding University, a MS in mathematics and PhD in biomedical mathematics from Florida State University. His current interests include 3D-printing, active learning, and infusing more physical activity into mathematics courses. Recent grant positions include principal investigator on the NSF-funded grant “EAGER: MAKER: Engaging Math Students with 3D-Printing for STEM Success and co-PI on the NSF-funded grant "Collaborative Research: Improving Representational Competence by Engaging with Physical Modeling in Foundational STEM Courses".

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Todd Haskell Western Washington University

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Todd Haskell is a cognitive scientist interested in learning and the development of expertise, especially in STEM fields. He is currently Associate Professor of Psychology at Western Washington University. In previous projects Dr. Haskell has worked on understanding how chemistry novices and experts navigate between macroscopic, symbolic, and small particle representations, and how pre-service elementary teachers translate an understanding of energy concepts from physics to other disciplines.

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Liam G. O’Bannon Whatcom Community College

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Liam O'Bannon is a undergraduate engineering student at Whatcom Community College, expecting to graduate in the Spring of 2021. He works in the school's engineering lab designing, manufacturing, and iterating 3D modelling kits for instructional use. His academic goal is to transfer to a four year university to attain a bachelors in mechanical engineering. Outside of school Liam is an avid flight student, and hopes to combine his passions for aviation and engineering in his future career.

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Abstract

This NSF-IUSE exploration and design project began in fall 2018 and features cross-disciplinary collaboration between engineering, math, and psychology faculty to develop learning activities with 3D-printed models, build the theoretical basis for how they support learning, and assess their effectiveness in the classroom. We are exploring how such models can scaffold spatial skills and support learners’ development of conceptual understanding and representational competence in calculus and engineering statics. We are also exploring how to leverage the model-based activities to embed spatial skills training into these courses. The project’s original focus was on group learning in classroom activities with shared manipulatives. After a year of development and pilot activities, we commenced data collection in classroom implementations of a relatively mature curriculum starting fall 2019. Data collection ended abruptly in March 2020 when we had to shift gears in the context of a shift to online learning amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

With uncertainty as to when the use of shared hands-on models in a collaborative in-person learning context would be feasible again, it was clear a change in approach would be necessary. We have since developed new versions of the models and associated curriculum designed for independent at-home use in the context of online learning. We implemented the new curricula in an online statics courses in fall 2020 and in multiple sections of online calculus courses in winter 2021. In this paper, we describe our strategies for implementing hands-on learning at home. We also present some example activities and compare the approach to the face-to-face versions. Finally, we compare student feedback results on the online activities to analogous feedback data from the classroom implementations and discuss implications for the anticipated return to face-to-face learning in the classroom.

Davishahl, E., & Singleton, L., & Haskell, T., & O’Bannon, L. G. (2021, July), Hands on STEM Learning at Home with 3D-Printed Manipulatives Paper presented at 2021 ASEE Virtual Annual Conference Content Access, Virtual Conference. https://peer.asee.org/37238

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