Teacher Tips: Preparing for the New School Year

Planning for back to school can seem daunting, especially given the current uncertainty regarding whether to teach students in the classroom or remotely.

Our back to school tips and resources will help you prep with ideas to keep remote learning hands-on, and our list of engaging lessons for all grade levels will help you launch your school year with success.

Tips for Hands-On Remote Learning

The 2020-2021 school year will likely be fully or partially remote for many teachers, so we’re sharing resources that can help you integrate hands-on projects into your virtual learning environment.

  • If your class is partially remote, plan a hands-on project that students can do remotely. Send students home with 3D pens and plastics for an activity, then have them share their projects with the class in a virtual classroom meeting. Sanitize the 3D pens once they are returned to your classroom to keep your tools clean and safe.
  • Use our 3Doodler EDU Webinar archive and our free lessons to extend your hands-on learning projects. Great for the the classroom or the living room!
  • Add the free 3Doodler app to your classroom app tool belt. It is filled with tons of educational, tactile projects to make Doodling as easy as 1, 2, 3D!
      • Students can Doodle with the Start pen directly on the tablet screen safely. If using a Create+ pen, tape a DoodlePad on the screen to protect the tablet.

Plan Lessons Ahead

We’ve picked some great lessons for each grade level to help you plan for back to school. Crafted by teachers, each lesson has step-by-step instructions to make it easy for you to implement. Common Core, CSTA, NGST and ISTE standards are included in our lessons to help you fit them into your curriculum requirements.

Lessons for Grades K-2

Doodle-Sole-Charms (Sense of Touch & Sight)
Time: One 45-minute session
Skill: Beginner
Grades: K to 2nd

In this lesson, students will work with a partner to investigate two of their five senses, touch and sight, and then identify various patterns using these senses. Students will doodle "sole-charms" for their sneakers using the soles of their shoes to create the texture. Students can then attach to the charms to the laces of their sneakers.

MATH: Comparing Numbers with Doodle Gator
Time: Two 45-minute sessions
Skill: Beginner
Grades: K to 2nd

In this activity, students will work in pairs to doodle models which will be used to identify sets of numbers as greater than, less than or equal to. Students will hear the story of Doodle-Gator, a hungry, number-chomping gator who always likes eating the largest number, and Equal Eagle, who loves balancing numbers of equal value on her wings. This will help students remember the meaning and proper usage of these math symbols used to compare numbers.

Lessons for Grades 3-5

Dial up the Sun! Patterns on Earth and in Space
Time: One 45 minute session, which must be followed up over 6 consecutive hours. *Conduct this activity on a sunny day!
Skill: Beginner
Grades: 3rd to 5th

In this activity, students will work in pairs to design an innovative gnomon for a functional sundial. Students will record data regarding their observations about the length and position of shadows cast by the sun over a series of 4 hours. Based on this data, students will make inferences regarding patterns to predict the length of the shadow and its position over the next 2 hours.

Pentomino Puzzler (Geometry)
Time: One-two 45 minute sessions
Skill: Intermediate
Grades: 3rd to 5th

In this activity, students will work in pairs to create a set of 3Doodled pentominoes and then assemble them to solve the 6x10 rectangle. Pentominoes are tetris-like shapes that your students will enjoy designing and working with, as they're problem solving. The focus of this lesson is on the "Standards for Mathematical Practice," which compose the critical components of thinking and reasoning.

Lessons for Grades 6-8

ELA: 3Doodler Stop-Motion
Time: One 45-minute session
Skill: Intermediate
Grades: 6th to 8th

In this activity, students will work in pairs or small groups to identify the theme of a fictional text, summarize a scene that best reflects the theme, and create a 3Doodler stop-motion animation to enact the scene. Creative thinking skills will be integrated into this hands-on project that will help you assess your students' level of comprehension.

MATH: Doodler Dice Rollers
Time: Two 30-40- minute sessions
Skill: Intermediate
Grades: 6th to 8th

In this activity, students work in pairs to doodle dodecahedrons (12-sided) and icosahedrons (20-sided) to use in a math game that practices order of operations. Students will then create their own Doodle Dice Roller games to practice math skills.

Lessons for Grades 9-12

The Basic Unit of Life: Prokaryotic and Eukaryotic Cells (STEM)
Time: Two 60-minute sessions
Skill: Advanced
Grades: 9th to 12th

In this activity, students will work in pairs to doodle two cell models, one of a prokaryotic cell, and one of a eukaryotic cell. The students will build all parts in each model such as the nucleus, plasma, cytoplasm, mitochondrion, etc. The student pairs will analyze and record the differences and similarities between the cells.

Time: Two 45-minute sessions
Skill: Intermediate
Grades: 9th to 12th

In this activity, students will work individually to create a Rutherford model of an atom. Students will also work with a partner who will be responsible for double-checking their work for accuracy as the project is worked on. Their work will be shared with the rest of the class and displayed for other classes to see.

Want more free K-12 lessons? Browse our 3D Pen lesson library.

Do you have back to school tips to share with our community of teachers? Please post them on social media, and be sure to tag us!

@3Doodler #3Doodler #3DoodlerEDU

Featured image courtesy of Meredith Beed.

Lessons require a 3Doodler Start pen (ages 6-13) or Create+ pen (ages 14+) and 3Doodler Start 3D pen plastics or Create+ 3D pen plastics. We have 3Doodler classroom sets and Learn From Home Sets for differing learning environments. Our 3D pens and 3D pen plastic refills can be purchased on our website or on Amazon. 

Note: 3D pen plastics are not cross-compatible between the Start and the Create+.

Doodling Fine Art with Carina Shoshtary

“Fine art is knowledge made visible.” -Gustave Courbet

Carina Shoshtary describes herself as a modern hunter-gather who takes artistic inspiration from her immediate surroundings. Carina’s innovative approach to art through 3D design delights the senses and stirs the imagination.

  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+
  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+
  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+
  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+
  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+
  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+
  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+
  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+

The 3Doodler Create+ has been integral to Carina’s artwork, especially when designing jewelry and fine art sculptures. We had a chance to connect with Carina to learn about her creative background, her new “Hunter” collection, and the unique techniques she employs with the 3Doodler Create+ 3D printing pen.

Can you tell us about yourself and your history with fine art?

I’m an artist who works on jewelry and wearable art. I was first trained as a traditional goldsmith, then studied at the Academy of Fine Arts Munich, focusing on jewelry and objects. I describe myself as a modern hunter-gatherer as the materials I use are often found or recycled. My early works were wearable mini-sculptures but I didn’t care about how they interacted with the body. Now most of my pieces are molded to the human form, so they only really come to life when they are worn.

  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+
  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+
  • 3D Pen Fine Art by Carina Shoshtary using the 3Doodler Create+

What do you love about using the 3Doodler pen, and how has it been helpful as opposed to other artistic mediums?

During my training as a goldsmith, I quickly realized that metal wasn’t my favorite material. I am an intuitive maker and usually don’t plan pieces in detail beforehand, but rather, I respond impulsively to an emotional idea in the moment. Because of this, I prefer softer materials, which give in more willingly. The Create+ 3D pen has been perfect for my way of designing. It enables a very spontaneous and natural workflow.

Can you comment on the inspiration behind your “Hunter” series?

For several years I worked with Graffiti from a wall in Munich, which is a very distinct material. In the contemporary jewelry world, my name was to this material and it was hard to develop anything new. I took some time off from all obligations to make more artistic works and the “Hunter” project was the end result. I allowed myself time to sit in the studio and experiment with new materials. It’s been very liberating. I feel like I am doing the pieces I always wanted to create.


How has the 3D printing pen been an important tool for this series?

The “Hunter” series has served as a liberation project for my fine art, and the 3Doodler pen has been an incredibly useful tool for this collection. I find it very easy to use. Not only can I draw ornaments with it, which I later connect to more complex shapes, but I also use it to set pebbles, shells, or other materials. I use it to connect diverse materials to each other. The process is quick and effortless. Most of what I’ve created for this series has flowing aesthetics reminiscent of art nouveau, which I can easily develop with the 3D pen plastics.

Can you share some of the techniques you use when making your Doodles?

The most useful thing for my work that I’ve learned so far is that I can reheat the already hardened PLA material as many times as I need to in order to reshape it. For slight alterations I use a blow-dryer. If I want to reshape a form in a more extreme way though, I slightly heat the PLA with my jeweler torch. It doesn’t burn or smoke if you are careful, but gets extremely soft and pliable. For all aspiring Doodlers out there, my best advice is to experiment!

Are you inspired by Carina’s 3D pen art? Share your thoughts with us on social media, give Carina a follow, and be sure to post pictures of your 3D creations and tag us! @3Doodler #3Doodler #FineArt #WhatWillYouCreate?

Are you looking for 3D pen ideas? Perhaps you’re trying to find the best 3D pen for you? Check out our library of free projects to start creating, and be sure to view our collection of 3D pens and 3D pen plastics.

Doodle Camp: Free 6-Week Program

Introducing Doodle Camp, 3Doodler’s FREE summer program for K-8 students! Get ready to kick summer slide with our 6-week Doodle Camp guide.

With Doodle Camp, kids have fun with weekly 3D pen activities that encourage problem solving, three-dimensional thinking, and STEM learning.

From robots and dinosaurs to insects, birds and sea creatures, learners will use the guide’s 3D pen templates to make cool projects that ignite creativity and critical thinking. No matter if kids are at home or in a classroom setting, Doodle Camp will provide hours of meaningful engagement all while having a ton of fun.

"“The 3Doodler pens have been such a blessing to spark creativity in students that were otherwise stuck in a box. Off task behaviors are down and engagement is up!”"-Mrs. Smith, George Washington Carver Elementary Share
  • Young girl creatively using a 3D pen on paper.
  • Boy in blue sweatshirt, 3D drawing with green pen
  • 3Doodler pen art: Woman holding blue pen with scarf.
  • Little girl enjoying toy 3D pen art.
  • Young girl creating cell phone 3D pen art.
  • Male in grey sweatshirt creating 3D pen art.
  • Creative woman uses 3D pen to draw glasses on paper

Kids can print a certificate of completion here once all projects have been created. Download the free program below to get started.

Others in our community want to see students’ Doodles! Please share pictures of camper creations with us on social media, and be sure to tag us.

@3Doodler #3Doodler #3DoodlerEDU #WhatWillYouCreate #DoodleCamp

Doodle Camp: Free 6 Week Summer Program


Projects require a 3Doodler Start pen (ages 6-13) or Create+ pen (ages 14+) and 3Doodler Start 3D pen plastics or Create+ 3D pen plastics. Each 3D pen and their 3D pen plastic refills can be purchased on our website or on Amazon. 

Note: 3D pen plastics strands are not cross-compatible for the Start and the Create+.

Creative Projects to Bust Summer Boredom

How can you prevent a summer slump this time of year? Despite the lovely weather and freedom that summer break brings, often the familiar words “I’m bored” fill the air. Bring in the boredom busters!

These easy projects provide fun and creative ways to bust summer boredom, no matter which 3D printing pen you have. Spark imagination and build excitement. Have your 3D pen plastics handy and get ready for a craft-tastic time with your 3D Build & Play, 3Doodler Start, or 3Doodler Create+!

Projects for 3D Build & Play

3D pen art: Toy giraffe and horse on toy blow dryer

Spectacular Story Settings

Tell new and exciting tales with our free downloadable story backgrounds! Find your favorite new backdrops here, print them out, and let your imagination run wild.

3D pen art with toys on table.

Extend Your Play Full STEAM Ahead

Go full STEAM ahead by extending your storytime play with tech! See this amazing example of a stop-motion animation film made with the 3D Build & Play characters. Take your adventures to the next level with stop-motion animation.

Projects for 3Doodler Start

Golf ball shadow captured in small handheld 3D pen art!

Flashlight Projectors for Spooky Summer Stories

Tell spooky summer camp stories with custom flashlight projectors. Make them with our free stencils or create your own!

Plastic animals standing on wooden table - 3D pen art

Ping Pong Safari

Create a collection of your favorite safari animals with our safari animals tutorial. Simply use a ping pong for the base of your animal, add their features, then it’s safari time!

Projects for 3Doodler Create+

3D art: Purple bird feeder hanging from tree with green background

Beautiful Bird Feeder

Build a bird feeder in any color you like with our easy-to-follow stencil. Pick your favorite 3D pen plastic refills and start Doodling!

3D pen art of a small chocolate hedgehog.

Hedgehog Hider

Create your own hedgehog hider by following our fun tutorial. A perfect storage spot for your tiny bits and bobs.

What are your favorite 3D pen ideas that bust summer boredom? Let us know on social media, and be sure to share pictures of your projects!

@3Doodler #3Doodler #3DoodlerEDU #BoredomBusters #WhatWillYouCreate

Creativity Shines With Fun Summer Projects

Who’s ready to get creative this summer?

We’ve put together a list of our favorite summer themed projects from styling sandals to sand molds and more. Artistic projects with a 3D printing element engage kids and adults alike in design, collaboration, and critical thinking. Wherever you’re creating this summer get ready to pull out your 3Doodler Start and 3Doodler Create+ pens for a day of Doodling!

Projects for the 3Doodler Start (Ages 6-13)

Colorful beach hat on a giraffe with sunglasses - 3D pen art

Summer Vibe Pins

With these fun and easy DIY pins, you can add a splash of summer to hats, bags, jackets, or virtually any piece of fabric. See our free stencils and start creating!

Small 3D pen art sand with crab sculpture

Summer Sand Molds

Add a fun activity to your next beach trip with these DIY sand molds! Play in the sand and decorate the beach with sea creatures from your molds. They can also be used with clay! See our free stencil here.

Projects for the 3Doodler Create+ (Ages 14+)

3D pineapple in jar with green leaf

Upcycled Pineapple Jar

Are you pining for a fun way to store summer snacks? Our festive upcycled pineapple jar will add the perfect touch to your summer decor. All you need is a mason jar, a 3Doodler pen and our easy tutorial.

3D pen art: Pineapple design on flipflop sandals.

Festive FLEXY Flip Flops

Create a custom tropical touch to any pair of flip flops with this stellar summer stencil! Use our FLEXY filament to allow your sandals to bend and move with your feet on your serene summer strolls. Check out the stencil here.

Do you have amazing summer Doodles to share? Our community wants to be inspired by your unique creations! Please share them on social media and be sure to tag us.

@3Doodler #3Doodler #3DoodlerEDU #WhatWillYouCreate

Close-up: 3D pen art cake with sticks design

Get Inspiration in Your Inbox

Sign up to be the first to have our latest 3D pen lessons, stencils, deals, and discounts (yay!) deposited directly in your inbox.

You have Successfully Subscribed!