Summer STEM Camp: 3D Printing for Kids

Rhett, an instructor, shows a child how to launch a rocketLast week, Rappahannock Community College hosted Summer STEM Camp – a five-day intensive learning experience for children interested in science and technology. This year, participants learned throughout the week how to build, design, and print a rocket that they would later launch on the final day of camp.

To conceptualize how to build their rocket, participants first learned the basics of 3D printing by designing their own name-tags. Using Fusion 360 software, camp-goers learned the dynamics of print and design to produce their first original creations. Once participants understood how to design in 3D, the real test began. Each student produced an original rocket design that was printed on RCC’s 3D printer. Once the models were done, it was time to fly. 

Family displays printed rocketsThe final two days of camp were dedicated to student presentations, and the long-awaited rocket launch. With the supervision of Greg Dorsey, Rhett Moore and Brandin Thompson, participants launched their rockets into the sky. “It’s one of the most fun weeks of the college year,” said Mr. Moore. “By the time they leave, they’ve learned to launch a rocket. It’s pretty amazing.”