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70 Best 3D Printing Ideas for the Classroom

Oct 29, 2023

Warm up the printer!

There's something extra special about witnessing awe-inspired students as they eagerly watch their 3D printing creations take shape. With countless opportunities to design creative learning experiences and develop critical thinking skills, 3D printers are an innovative tech tool that can be used to teach just about any subject. But with so many possibilities available in the world of 3D printing, finding ideas that work with your educational objectives can seem overwhelming. Fear not—we’ve got you covered! Read on to discover 70 incredible 3D printing ideas you should try with your students.

Get your students engaged in science by hosting a balloon-powered dragster competition that teaches the principles of forces, motion, and Newton's third law. This lesson encourages design thinking as students figure out the best size, shape, and weight for their car and wheels to travel the farthest in a straight line.

Learn more: Stumphunkman at Tinkercad

Say goodbye to the struggles of teaching fractions! These printable math manipulatives are a game-changer for helping students grasp and visualize fractions with ease. By using your own 3D printer, you can conveniently print out as many manipulatives as you need for the classroom.

Learn more: Andrew Sink at Printables

If you’re looking for fun 3D printing ideas to tackle when boredom strikes, consider creating a mini catapult. Once fully finished, give it a try and see what kind of mischief you can cause!

Learn more: Luke Tansell at Thingiverse

Fidget toys have gained popularity for providing comfort and aiding concentration for kids with sensory needs in the classroom. These 3D-printed fidget toys are a great choice for anyone looking for an affordable and effective solution to help students focus.

Learn more: DaVinci2000 at Printables

Why settle for an ordinary tape dispenser when you can make your own T-rex skull tape dispenser? This 3D printing idea is a fun and creative way to incorporate dinosaurs into your lessons on their impact on Earth.

Learn more: MingShiuan at Pinshape

Attention music and band teachers! If you’re looking for a cost-effective alternative to expensive musical instruments, look no further than this 3D-printed ocarina. Rest assured that it's not only affordable but also musically accurate—perfect for your classroom needs.

Learn more: Robsoundtrack at Thingiverse

Impress your students with this innovative 3D-printed frog dissection kit. Say goodbye to the mess and unpleasantness that comes with traditional dissection methods.

Learn more: Makerbot at Thingiverse

Why settle for a standard fidget spinner when you can have a poseable seasonal snowman fidget toy? This creative alternative is sure to entertain and calm your students.

Learn more: 3DPrinty at Printables

In geography class, 3D printing ideas can make topographical maps and other geographic features that involve students in creating mountains, oceans, plains, and more.

Learn more: Thingiverse

To add a vintage touch to your contemporary timepiece, simply gather some 3D-printed pieces, a Google Home Mini, and a few other components to assemble this stand.

Learn more: Thingiverse

Introduce students to the written language of braille and 3D modeling concepts through 3D printing ideas. Use this technology to create custom braille models, from basic blocks to braille signage for different areas of your school.

Learn more: Tinkercad

Get students involved in both toy design and concepts of forces and motion by guiding them in creating spinning tops. After 3D-printing their designs, students can compete to see whose spinning top can spin the longest and then analyze the results to make improvements to their designs.

Learn more: Brmiller at Tinkercad

Make reading and holding a book with one hand a breeze with this nifty tool. Bookworms who enjoy reading for long periods will especially appreciate the convenience it provides.

Learn more: Ax at Printables

Students use Tinkercad to create assistive devices like bottle openers for individuals with arthritis or a weak grip. Through the design process, they’ll also learn about simple machines and the principles of levers. This project is a practical way to apply engineering principles while addressing a real-world problem.

Learn more: PrintLab

Students in a classroom selected influential historical figures without memorials and designed monuments using 3D software and printers. This project allowed them to learn and teach about their chosen figure's accomplishments in a unique way.

Learn more: Me3D

This uncomplicated 3D-printed tool is a lifesaver for classroom settings with struggling readers or students with ADHD. The text isolator aids in helping students concentrate on one line of text at a time while reading, making it an effective tool for improving reading comprehension.

Learn more: Makers Making Change at Printables

This pencil holder design might surprise you with its ability to liven up an otherwise mundane object. The creator of this model promises that it's as easy as "print, clip in pencils, admire …"!

Learn more: Thingiverse

Looking for an engaging activity to keep students of all ages entertained for hours? Check out this 3D-printed marble maze! It's not only a fantastic gift idea from teachers but also a fun present for students to give to others in their lives.

Learn more: Ericman314 at Printables

Instead of printing a standard cube, try printing dice. This simple shape is easy to print and all students need to do is add the dots. Not only can they use it when playing board games, but they’ll also have the satisfaction of telling everyone they made it themselves. Pretty cool, right?

Learn more: MyMiniFactory

Music teachers and primary educators looking to enhance their students’ printing skills, rejoice! This line-drawing tool is the perfect addition to your teaching tool kit.

Learn more: CodeCreations at Thingiverse

Check out these amazing 3D-printed palettes that fit snugly on your thumb! They’re perfect for wiping down your brush and mixing small amounts of color. Your students are bound to adore them!

Learn more: Megan McFergan at Thingiverse

The Cali Cat is a popular 3D print option because of its fun and cute nature, often used for calibration and as a benchmark model for beginners. It is also kept as a souvenir by many students as they learn 3D printing ideas.

Learn more: Dezign at Thingiverse

Let's tackle planning your day with ease. This printable planner stencil will simplify your to-do list and help you stay on track. With a quick glance, you can confirm which tasks haven't been checked off yet and tackle them before they pile up.

Learn more: Printables

Before designing a whistle, teach students about sound waves, frequency, and amplitude. This project involves an iterative process where students can analyze and evaluate their creations to improve on their designs.

Learn more: Instructables

Say no to the hassle of carrying around keys! Your students will appreciate the opportunity to create a personalized key holder to keep their house keys, car keys, and any other keys organized and easily accessible.

Learn more: ProteanMan at Thingiverse

3D-printed doorstops are typically triangular in shape, but they serve an essential function in preventing doors from slamming due to drafts. For a more intricate design, you can experiment with engraving a word onto the stopper using 3D printing software. The possibilities are endless!

Learn more: Thingiverse

Say goodbye to a cluttered whiteboard area with this convenient marker holder. Capable of holding four Expo markers along with a brush and spray, this organizer is the perfect addition to your classroom setup.

Learn more: Pdogman at Printables

Crafting your own drink coaster is a simple process that even students can accomplish. With a little practice, anyone can become a pro at designing custom drink coasters.

Learn more: Thingiverse

Teach students to create unique pen cases using intersecting shapes like pebbles in Tinkercad. In this lesson, they’ll also learn about mathematical linear sequences to determine the number of pebbles needed for a Bic Cristal biro cartridge to fit perfectly in the center.

Learn more: PrintLab

In today's world, USB cables reign supreme. If you’re looking to save time and energy by avoiding the tedious task of untangling cords later, this printable organizer is just what you need to keep your space clutter-free.

Learn more: Thingiverse

For students who are new to 3D printing ideas, a low poly ring is an excellent starting point. These rings are small and require minimal material, making them quick to print. Despite their simplicity, the design is still attractive and eye-catching.

Learn more: Levenement71 at Thingiverse

My students were deeply affected by this activity—the experience of holding a heart or skull in their own hands really made them contemplate and reflect.

Learn more: Makerbot at Thingiverse

Bring some extra fun to your kindergarten or primary grade class with this delightful custom bubble wand project. Bubbles are always a hit among kids, and this personalized wand will make for an excellent souvenir that children can take home and enjoy over and over again.

Learn more: Preealpha at Thingiverse

Get your hands on a file for a paintable 3D-printed model of the Earth's cutaway. This model displays the crust, mantle, outer core, and inner core in intricate detail.

Learn more: Kseluga at Thingiverse

Add a touch of beauty to your classroom with this lovely hanging planter. It's perfect for students to take home and enjoy or even to customize as a thoughtful Mother's Day gift.

Learn more: ZSAviation at Thingiverse

Have students design their own cartouches as a fun way to learn about Egyptian hieroglyphics and monuments. Using a hieroglyphic alphabet, they can personalize their obelisk model by adding their name.

Learn more: CreateEducation

This hands-free design allows you to access GPS maps with ease and receive vocal assistance to guide you along the way. Let's make learning and exploring stress-free! The design can even easily be modified to fit any type of phone you may have.

Learn more: YouMagine

The options for 3D-printed stamps are endless, giving students the freedom to get as creative as they want. With numerous stamp forms to choose from and the ability to add letters, shapes, inspiring words, and other designs, there's no limit to what can go on the actual stamp. Let your imagination run wild!

Learn more: Thingiverse

Your students are sure to adore this comical and charming toothpick dispenser. And it's useful too!

Learn more: Shusi at Thingiverse

Looking for a fun way to encourage better dental hygiene habits in your students? Look no further than these 3D-printed toothbrush holders! Shaped like a literal tooth, they’re sure to be a hit and make brushing just a bit more enjoyable.

Learn more: Ericman93 at Thingiverse

Interested in 3D printing ideas for a classroom instrument? OpenFab PDX offers several options for you to choose from, giving you the opportunity to print your very own four-string fiddle.

Learn more: OpenFab PDX

To give it a personalized touch, consider adding cool engravings to the sides of this yo-yo. Once complete, all you need is a good string and it's ready to use.

Learn more: lolo_aguirre at Thingiverse

Visualize the incredible size of a hurricane with a 3D-printed satellite view model. This model showcases the eye and swirling clouds in stunning detail, helping students better understand the phenomenon. Plus, it includes outlines of land to provide a sense of scale.

Learn more: ConorOkane at Thingiverse

This sleek controller holder is not only practical, but it's a smart solution for those who need to maximize space in their living area. Whether you’re setting up your PS5 or Xbox Series X, this accessory adds a stylish touch.

Learn more: Thingiverse

Motivate your students to bring their household tools to life using a 3D printer. From screwdrivers and wrenches to adjustable wrenches and more, the possibilities are endless.

Learn more: Daniel Noree at Instructables

Take a look at this adorable turtle and his animal friends, which double as both a convenient smartphone stand and key chain. With this handy gadget, your students can keep their phone upright while on the go and always have their cute companion with them.

Learn more: Sonia Verdu at Pinshape

3D printing offers the opportunity to create cookie cutters in a variety of shapes. Because they are hollow, students can learn to 3D-print with minimal filament usage.

Learn more: asbeg at Thingiverse

Encourage students to explore the world of bridges by designing their own or creating 3D-printed models. From suspension and beam to arch, cantilever, truss, and cable-stayed, there are many types of bridges to consider. This project can be linked to specific cities and rivers where these bridges can be found.

Learn more: Mr. Granahan from Brookwood Schools

Honor your students’ accomplishments with these personalized gold medals. These medals are an ideal award for recognizing outstanding achievements throughout the school year, such as student of the month or various successes.

Learn more: Murdoc at Printables

Looking for a cute and functional bookmark to help your students keep track of their reading in class? These adorable panda bookmarks are the perfect addition to any novel study or reading activity.

Learn more: OJ46 at Thingiverse

Students could work in teams to create an assistive device for a real user, guided by design instructions and human-centered principles.

Learn more: PrintLab

With the ubiquity of digital clocks these days, even my own students struggle to read analog clocks. Luckily, this 3D-printed analog clock model offers a solution for kids learning to tell time on analog clocks.

Learn more: at Printables

Students can no longer use the excuse of uncharged technology in class, thanks to this clever desktop cable organizer. Not only does it ensure that cords remain tangle-free and organized, but it can be easily attached to desks at home or in the classroom, preventing cords from getting lost in the abyss.

Learn more: Cameron O’Neill at MyMiniFactory

Make presenting demographic information more exciting and readable with 3D bar charts. Whether it's population, life expectancy, or other data, these charts provide a unique way to teach students to display information. Consider having students use demographic or survey information from your school to create customized 3D bar charts that showcase school-specific data.

Learn more: NicholasBuilds at Thingiverse

As more students incorporate technology into their classroom studies, it's now commonplace to see headphones at every desk. Keep your classroom organized with this practical desk-mounted headphone holder, which provides a designated spot for students to store their headphones conveniently.

Learn more: Beaver at Printables

Tired of constantly misplacing or untangling your earphones? This practical 3D-printed earbud holder is a handy tool that keeps your earphones organized and tangle-free.

Learn more: Sneakypoo at Thingiverse

Your students will definitely appreciate being able to create wall outlet shelves. These shelves provide a safe and stable spot for their phones to rest while charging.

Learn more: WallTosh at Pinshape

Bag clips are a must-have in any classroom, especially with students who are always hungry. With these convenient clips, students can easily seal their snacks and avoid spills or messes in their backpacks or on the floor.

Learn more: Tquacken at Thingiverse

Enhance your students’ math skills with these versatile math manipulatives that can be used to create equations. These unique blocks are perfect for honing addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division skills.

Learn more: DC at Printables

These 3D-printed spinners can be customized to include different mathematical operations like addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. As students spin the spinner, they can work on solving the math problems that it lands on.

Learn more: Paulo Ricardo Blank at MyMiniFactory

Here's another straightforward yet highly practical classroom design. These bag hooks are perfect for keeping student backpacks off the floor and in order. Plus, they can come in handy for hanging purses or bags at restaurants or other public places.

Learn more: PieSupplies at Printables

Looking for a quick and easy way to amplify the sound from your smartphone? Meet this little monster! This handy gadget utilizes simple audio engineering to boost the volume of your device. Perfect for when you or your students need to turn up the volume.

Learn more: 3DShook at Cults3D

A 3D printer can be used to create an educational and engaging model of the water cycle, showcasing each step of the process in intricate detail. This interactive tool helps students understand the importance of sustainability and water conservation, making science education more exciting and hands-on.

Learn more: Mr. Martens at Tinkercad

Home economics and culinary teachers, rejoice! This tool is a dream come true for teaching students how to use chopsticks with ease.

Learn more: Zydac at Thingiverse

Take your cooking skills to the next level with this incredible measuring cube that can measure various increments. The best part? You won't have to wash multiple small spoons anymore.

Learn more: Jevus at Thingiverse

Add a creative touch to classroom learning with this engaging matching game, made possible by 3D printing ideas. By using the provided templates, you can customize matching quizzes that are both fun and educational for your students to complete.

Learn more: Jobla at Printables

Create your own replicas of ancient wonders like the Pyramids of Giza, Chichen Itza, the Colosseum in Rome, the Taj Mahal, and the Statue of Liberty with 3D printing. The possibilities are endless!

Learn more: Thingiverse

Stay organized with these handy 3D-printed passes for tracking bathroom breaks, library visits, and trips to the hall.

Learn more: Bjripp at Printables

Introducing a multicolor 3D model of a cell is an excellent way to make science come alive for students who are studying the different parts of a cell. Not only does it engage their curiosity and imagination, but it also allows them to learn about 3D printing in the process.

Learn more: Mosaic Manufacturing at MyMiniFactory

We all love the T-Rex game on Chrome that we can play when the WiFi is out. Now, imagine having your own flexible version of this lovable character that can be used as a fidget or as a fun game toy.

Learn more: JamesThePrinter at Printables

If you’re on the hunt for 3D printing ideas that are tailored to your grade level or subject matter, be sure to explore the education section on MyMiniFactory. There, you’ll find a plethora of project ideas and files that are specifically designed for educators like you.

From math and science to language arts and social studies, there's no shortage of resources to help you incorporate 3D printing into your curriculum in a meaningful way. So why not take advantage of this excellent resource and discover a world of educational possibilities with 3D printing?