PrintLab Classroom: Top

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Product description

Design your own Spinning Top


A lesson where students compete to design and 3D print the spinning top that spins for the longest time


* This is a free lesson that is part of The PrintLab Classroom lesson portal. To view details of the full portal, click here. *



In this two-part lesson, students will design and 3D pring their own unique spinning top. During the lesson they will experiment with demonstration models and make design decisions on how they intend to improve the design and aesthetics of the demonstration models. In the main part of the lesson, students will follow an instructional video to design a spinning top. Using the skills learned in the tutorial, they go on to design their own unique spinning top, which will be used in the class competition in Lesson 2! Enrolling in PrintLab Classroom will give you complete access to the teacher training material and lesson documents. This includes content to help you prepare and deliver the lessons along with design tutorials so you become familiar with the process prior to teaching it in the classroom.


Subject Areas

The lesson can be incorporated into the study of math, physics, technology, art, or design. The material can be adapted for ages 7-16.


Learning Criteria

In this project students will:

- develop an understanding of the law of physics that states 'The total angular momentum of a system remains constant unless acted on by an external torque'

- analyze and critique an existing spinning top before using problem solving and conceptual skills to develop an improved iteration of the design

- use Tinkercad software to design a spinning top optimized for 3D printing

- manufacture a spinning top using a 3D printer

- critique, evaluate, and test their creations and the work of others


Equipment List

Each student will require:

1 x laptop/computer with mouse and internet access

1 x pen/pencil


The teacher will require:

1 x 3D printer and PLA filament

1 x laptop/computer with mouse, internet access, and slicing software for the 3D printer

5 x demonstration models (STL provided in lesson materials)

1 x stopwatch (more could be required depending on the group sizes teachers choose)

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