"Bridges" 3D Project

Key Stage: 3


Age Group: Y9

Length of Activity: 6 Weeks


STEM subjects addressed
  • Science

  • Maths

  • Design and Technology

  • Engineering


Project description

Students work in groups to produce scale model sections of the High Level Bridge across the river Tyne.


Expected outcomes

Introduction to using 3D modelling software as opposed to conventional modelling methods. Working from drawings. Printing and assembly of component parts. Understanding and testing of forces and structures. Material properties. Converting imperial measurements to metric. Understanding of scale.


Learning directly from machine operation
  • Scope and limitations of FDM

  • Preparation of model for manufacture

  • Manufacturing parameters (orientation, support structures, etc)

  • Designing for 3D printing

  • Materials and their properties

  • Industrial processes

  • Amount and cost of materials

  • Personal skills – confidence,  teamwork and problem solving


Learning from comparison of additive manufacturing with other methods
  • Advantages of additive over subtractive

  • Using a combination of methods for a complete product, eg mould making

  • Choice of manufacturing method

  • Sustainability issues (waste,  costs,  product life cycle)

  • Properties and choice of materials

  • Industrial processes

Learning from modelling products
  • Visualisation and communication of ideas

  • Design processes

  • Size and scale of objects

  • Contribution from other school subjects

  • Personal skills – creativity,  risk taking,  motivation