Tactile Tech Builds Community & Awareness for the Visually Impaired

3Doodler is proud to raise awareness and create accessible ways for visually impaired individuals to interact with art, literature, and symbolism.

In recognition of Braille Literacy Month and in remembrance of Louis Braille, who was born on January 4th, 1809, we are pleased to share a snapshot of the incredible work that teachers and students did to transform storybooks using their 3D pens in support of the blind and visually impaired as part of 3D Giving Day.

Cat 3D pen art on book with cat picture

Support for the Visually Impaired

3D Giving Day is a unique opportunity to bring together students and creators from around the world to use 3Doodler pens and transform the pages of storybooks into tactile, 3D learning tools, giving the visually impaired a new way to connect with literature.

In partnership with the Build a Better Book project, based at the University of Colorado Boulder, 3Doodler was able to reach out to invite students and their teachers to help support people with visual impairments as well as other learning disabilities. Together, we encouraged middle and high school youth to develop their hands-on tech skills and learn about their community as they design and create accessible, multi-modal picture books, graphics, and even games that people can experience through touch.

Here is a message from a member of the after-school program at CCHY in Picayune, Mississippi, explaining 3D Giving Day, in her own words.

Teachers, students, and creators across the country made picture books more accessible with images that readers could touch and feel to trace the outline of images or text. The opportunity to combine touch and sensory experience through tactile books ensures that blind and low vision individuals can access classic stories in new, imaginative ways.

"In a challenging year, we are grateful that so many teachers and students stepped up to support their local community with picture books to aid the blind and visually impaired."-Maxwell Bogue, Co-Founder at 3Doodler Share

Here are just a few examples that were submitted to 3Doodler by participating schools around the country.

  • 3d pen art showcasing unique hairstyles on painted pictures.
  • 3D pen art featuring portraits of diverse faces.
  • Creative 3D pen art featuring a girl and boy at a table.

The finished products were donated to libraries, hospitals, and preschools with blind and visually impaired programs in December 2020.

As part of an ongoing effort to provide students with the appropriate tools to learn from home due to the current pandemic, the picture books were adapted for at-home use to ensure that education and collaboration would continue to thrive.

Creative Freedom Through Accessibility

3Doodler is committed to making our products accessible to all users, lowering barriers and obstacles, and putting the power of creativity into the hands of more people.

Recognized by the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB), one of the UK’s leading sight loss charities and the largest community of blind and partially sighted people, 3Doodler incorporates unique features to help users navigate their 3D pens and offers audio files for additional orientation.

Forecasting a Wintry Mix with New Lessons

Looking for a fresh start in the new year? Look no further. We have just what you need to get students’ attention and spark hands-on learning with 3D printing using the 3Doodler Start or Create+ pens in the classroom or at home.

The 3Doodler Start in Classroom The 3Doodler Start in Classroom

Schools across the globe encouraged outdoor learning this year to reduce the spread of the pandemic and students couldn’t be happier. In fact, many schools are looking to keep outdoor learning experiences in place even as temps dip and winter weather moves in.

“They’re seeing the outdoors around them and it brings relevancy to what they’re studying,” said Cindy Soule, a fourth grade teacher in Maine, in a recent article. “They will remember that forever.”

Encouraging students to explore the outdoors and apply real-world concepts to their work is easier than you might think with a few new lessons we’re excited to share.

Ellen Peterson, a science teacher at Smithfield Middle School and frequent Doodler, offers up her wintry mix of new lessons designed for students in grades 6-12.

Bubble: Small ornaments on table - 3D pen art

Frozen Bubbles & Bubble Wands – (Grades 6-8)

Students will delight in this hands-on experiment with a cool twist! Designing your own bubble wand in 3D is a fun, creative, and easy way to boost learning outcomes and study changes in temperature. Using the scientific method, students will make hypotheses, track their observations, collect data, and record their findings. Freezing the bubbles either in dry ice or during a quick trip outdoors enables students to measure their bubbles for added experimentation and study. What did the class learn about the “perfect” bubble?

Marshmallow Snowman - 3D pen art on table

Platonic Solid Snowman Math Challenge – (Grades 9-12)

In this lesson, students will research and study the Platonic solids with an opportunity to apply their learning and craft their own model in 3D. Once their research is complete, students will choose 3 platonic solids that they learned about to construct a snowman with the 3Doodler Create+ pen. At the end of the lesson, students report their findings and share their snowman creations. How many different snowmen designs can they create?

Winter is a fantastic time of year for outdoor exploration and providing new creative hands-on learning opportunities.

What other hands-on lessons do you have planned in 2021? Share your fun classroom lessons and designs with us by tagging: @3Doodler #3Doodler #WhatWillYouCreate

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

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