This is a KS4 Engineering project that my year 10's do (14 year olds). It gives the students choice and the opportunity to work creatively. The outcome is a quality product that works well, most importantly at the end of the project all the students will want to take their work home......empty work box = awesome project.

The students can choose either to make a desk light which is more functional, or a mood light which is more aesthetic. Check out the video to see how the magnetic switch adds extra awesomeness to the product.

Learning Objective

Students will design and make either a functional or decorative light. The design process reflects how professional design engineers work by teaching students creative designing skills to produce a unique and original design idea, and then how to make a virtual prototype using 3D CAD software. To stretch and challenge the students the project introduces more advanced measuring and marking skills, metal fabrication and forming, the properties of thermo / thermosetting plastics and how to manipulate their properties to make the design. The students will be introduced into basic electronic components and will be required to neatly house the circuit in their lamp. Lastly the students are required to recall and apply prior learning and knowledge of using engineering machinery and joining methods.

Project info

This project costs approximately £2.50 per student
I have attached the project work sheets

Step 1: Creative Designing

Nature is by far the best engineer, it creates the strongest structures, it makes the most beautiful designs, and its secrets have been the inspiration of many historic and iconic engineering achievements..........so we will use it to inspire our designs. Ask the students to bring in images to inspire their work.... some suggestions below.
  • Sliced Peppers
  • Sliced Oranges
  • Any tropical fruit....sliced
  • Architectural plants (see photos)
  • Any other natural item that has a structure or pattern e.g. wood grain
Rearrange, remove, overlap, repeat, twist, combine, modify.............these are the tools of creativity.... use them liberally.  

If you look at the 'Ideas' page you can see that the design does not look like the inspiration image, this does not matter, the images are there to inspire shapes......there is no right or wrong here......if you end up with a design......mission accomplished :)

<p>Great resource! I have just taken over an engineering class so think I am going to try this out with them!</p>
<p>This is what I call an Engineering Project. Beautifully inspiring. Lucky young ones!</p><p>Thanks for sharing. </p>
And this is but a part of what is taught in the schools of England??<br><br>No wonder why American schools lag behind everyone else! <br>This is embarrassing to say the least to the American school system. *shakes head*<br><br>I think it's beyond awesome that things like this are taught over there...I mean, this goes WAAAAAAAAAY beyond my understanding or abilities, but the end result(in this case the light) is fantastic!!!<br><br>TY for sharing Sir! :)
Hay many thanks S09, dont be too hard on american schools! What I do at my school is VERY rare in the UK. Most schools technology projects over here are totally shamefull! its my life's mission to make the uk get back to power house of engineering and ingenuity it used to be 100 years ago.......or at least get it started on the road to recovery ;) Jonny
Here Here!
Definitely agree - I'm another UK based Technology teacher,and I only wish that my department were open to projects like this! I doubt I could convince those I teach alongside to do this, but I'll be making one in my own time for definite - it looks fab!
Some of my ideas were accepted with no issues, other ideas I just did anyway because as I teacher I will always do what I think is right for my kids. If you want a tip....... When I first started as an nqt, and I knew my ideas would fall upon deaf ears, I thought of a superior project that uses the same materials as the existing work...... Then secretly started the project. So long as it follows the NC and costs the same, how can they complain......however....You need to be pretty confident your ideas will work though or you'll end up looking like a fool :)
well I personally think they have a great teacher! :)
I agree with SIRJAMES. They do have a great teacher.<br /><br />It is rare, but there are many teachers in the US that are doing similarly awesome hands-on work with their students. Check out some of their submissions in the Teacher Contest. Instructables is trying to help bring this level of instruction to any teacher who wants to try it.
Well....I am humbled, Thanks Jamie, Stu and wilgubeast for you lovely comments :) As for the awesome american teachers I defo agree with wilgubeast......there are some cool projects in the contest, my personal favourites are from stumitch and lakyama.............jolly good
Hey Jonny... thanks for standing up for us lil'ol' North Americans! mind you... i am Canadian so we are i suppose a pleasant &quot;mix&quot; of U.K. and U.S.A. call us UKSA's i guess. And i have to echo the feeling that amazing work is being done in tech classes all over the world. Check out all the entries just to clarify that point... nice job on the instructable!<br>-stu
One reason for the decline in American Industrial Arts Classes is the rise of the Liability Law Suite Lawyer and the subsequent rise in School Liability Insurance Rates. <br>Power tools? Too dangerous!!! Sheet metal? Too many sharp edges- some one might cut themselves!!! You get the idea. Too many GI Bill educated lawyers came out of the Viet Nam Vetrens.
I took a continuing ed class at a local high school a few years ago. Off to the side of the room was a complete foundry with gas forges, crucibles, sand tables, etc. Nothing had been used for a long time and upon inquiry, it was because of possible lawsuits that the school stopped offering shop classes. However, this was enabled by parents trying to shield their children from any adverse outcome. Now they have children that won't change a light bulb for fear of electrocution. <br> <br>When I was in the 3rd grade (early 1970's) we had basic hand tools and a scrap wood bin in class. During free time anyone could build simple projects. By the 7th grade I was in metal shop and running a lathe as well as learning to gas weld. Tell most that now and you are looked at like you are crazy. Or, they wonder what was wrong with your parents for allowing you to do it. Kudos to jonnyd55 for finding a way to offer building projects to young minds.
That is very, very sad! I think around the globe children are being cotton-balled and not getting the chance to do exciting things for fear of repurcussions! Good point!
Beautiful work, clean lines and interesting! Who wouldn't like something like this on their desk - well done!
This is supreme! Well done!
Excellent Instructable! My shop projects in High School were making a small flimsy tool box and a hammer and a table lamb from a syrup bottle. I wish I would have had a project as interesting as this. Please create more Instructables.
Hi, thanks for the nice comment :) unfortunately most of the projects in most of the UK schools are as you described....or much, much worse! As for more instructables.... watch this space :)
This is a really phenomenal, start-to-finish Instructable. I voted for you, primarily because I believe we need more instructional, hands-on teachers out there...I wish I had had you in high school.
Hi, thanks for your comment &amp; vote :)
Wow. i don't think i've ever read such a comprehensive and thorough step-by-step instructible in my life! Pre-concept drawings, Cad models, and even in-situ videos! <br><br>Well done! !
Many thanks captain! pleased you enjoyed this ible :) ..... If you like what you see check out my other projects, or even better try to make one :)
Stuff like this would've made high school fun for me and not depressing. I think if I had projects like this, I wouldn't be able to sleep because I'd be so excited to go to school the following day to work on it. I was fortunate enough that my school still had a very very small woodworking shop, no lathe though. It's amazing that such a small class showed me that woodworking was what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. It's a shame we can't get this kind of hands-on education back into schools like it once was.
I whole heartedly agree!!!<br>
Hi, unfortunately your story is a common one in the UK, before i started at my school 5years ago our lathes were rarely used......now they are churning out cool stuff every day :)
thats awesome mate! looks like something straight out of an old scifi flick. i've been looking for some wiring projects and looks like a found one.<br><br>as a side note if you don't have the materials or tools for bending the metal. 1/8&quot; ABS with a painted chrome/silver backing would be a great alternative to the aluminum.
Now you mention it....i can see what you mean....someting from lost in space perhaps :) <br> <br>As for shaping the ally....if you dont have rollers... get a solid bar or pipe approx 2&quot; in diameter and a leather mallet. Then bash the ally around the bar/pipe......you can get surprisingly good results from this :)
mmm yes that skipped my mind. ill have to make a couple of them using the plastic and then the ally with the different manufacturing methods and see how they come out. the dented ally shade would provide a &quot;weathered&quot; look to it which might be preferred by some.<br><br>ill defiantly show some pictures when i get around to it. <br>cheers.
Cool, defo upload the piccies of what you make :)
First, what is &quot;KS4&quot;? <br>I assume it is a part of a series of classes not taught in American schools. <br> <br>We used to have up through the 1960's some pretty good Industrial Education &quot;Shop&quot; Classes. <br>Letter Press and Cold Type Printing, Woodworking, Wood Turning, Welding (popular with farm boys), Plastics, Electrical, etc. <br>Industrial Arts books from the 1930's to 1950 showed how to make electric buzzers, bells, telegraphs, earphones, microphones and crystal radios. <br> <br>I actually learned to solder with a GAS heated SOLDERING COPPER in the seventh grade (age 12-14). <br> <br>I spent grades 1-4 in a one room rural school where the teacher made certain that everyone knew how to sew on a button and make a button hole. (Lost arts??) <br> <br>Have your class see how a WHITE PETE (plastic) bottle can act as a difuser for super bright LEDs. Energy shot drinks come in White PETE bottles. ( &quot;/1\ PETE&quot; recycle mark on the bottom.) <br> <br>I had a wild idea for a TV series about six girls who try to build an electric car. I call it &quot;Gadget Girls&quot;. It could break some stereotypes and get some girls into the shop classes. <br> <br>
Hi, The easiest way to explain it is, KS4 is an age range of students.....goes like this <br> <br>KS3 = 11 - 13 year olds <br>KS4 = 14-16 year olds <br>KS5 = 17-18 year olds
Very cool. I like your story board. Good Job. :)
Hi, thanks for the comment :)

About This Instructable




Bio: I love making stuff, I love Instructables, I love tools, I love machines, and I love materials. But most of all I love Arnie.
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