This instructable describes a simple curriculum for a 1-2 hour craft designed to work well in a classroom full of kindergartners. For this craft the kids will be decorating a flower pot with light-up 3D flowers. Students will hopefully learn a little about batteries, LEDs and 3D printers. Most all of the supplies can be purchased at a Dollar Store.
Example Supply List:
Total Cost < $1 per student
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We used two types of flowers for our project; swimming noodle flowers and 3D printed light-up flowers. You could probably do this project without a 3D printer but what is the fun in that? We purchased the flower shaped swimming noodle at the dollar store and cut it using a bread knife.
Printing and assembling the 3D Flowers is by far the most time consuming step for this project. I had to print the flowers over many days and spent an afternoon with my wife and kids assembling them so they would light up.
I designed the 3D flowers using OpenSCAD. It is designed to have a place for an LED and slot for a button battery. You can download the design for the flowers from the following website:
There was a total of 21 kids in my daughters Kindergarten class and I decided to let each one have two light up flowers. This required a lot of printing so I put 6 flowers at a time on my Ultimaker 2.
I tried printing the flowers with supports but the supports were difficult to remove. Instead I just printed them without supports such that the LED and battery areas were quite messy due to bridging of the plastic. This is okay since they will be covered anyway. With the help of my kids, we used small screw drivers to scrape out the extra pieces of plastic left over.
3. Attach resistor to LED
Next we attached the provided resistor to the LED by bending the longer wire in half and wrapping one end of the resistor around the bent wire. I bent the short LED wire into a loop for easy insert into the flower battery slot. The above picture shows how the LED and resistor looked before adding it to the flower. Make sure you test the LED with the battery before sticking it into the flower.
4. Insert LED and resistor to flower
First, slide the looped end of the LED into the battery slot and push the LED into the center hole. Using a small screwdriver push the led in as far as it will go and push wrapped resistor wire into the slot provided. For me the resistor would stick up and a 90 degree angle. This slot prevents the wire from touching the Top of the button battery.
5. Add the battery
Last thing to do is fit the battery Top (negative) facing the front of the flower. The battery should slide into the slot with the shore wire loop touching the Top of the battery. You can then touch the Back (positive) side of the battery with the remaining resistor wire and see the flower light up. I recommend storing the flowers unlit to help save battery power.