21st Century Classroom

Autodesk Debuts Free Maker Platform for Classrooms

Autodesk has launched Project Ignite, a free open learning platform designed to give students hands-on design experience in areas such as 3D printing and electronics.

"Targeting K-12 schools, Project Ignite encompasses the end-to-end design experience, from idea to digital modeling to physical fabrication," according to a news release. "It brings together free and custom design software, step-by-step projects and for-purchase hardware options."

The platform combines Autodesk's Tinkercad and 123D Circuits and is also available as part of purchased bundles with hardware, such as 3D printers or electronics kits, and training and professional development services with the support of partners including Microsoft, MakerBot and Electoninks Writeables.

"Project Ignite has been a wonderful addition to the classroom and I love what it does for my students' excitement, engagement and overall interest with design and 3D printing technology," said Kim Coyle, educator at Middle School of Plainville, in a prepared statement. "Our goal is to inspire and prepare the students to be the next generation of innovators, so we're expanding Project Ignite into other grade levels and looking into creating a makerspace next year to provide an environment that nurtures the students' curiosity and creativity."

More information is available at projectignite.autodesk.com.

About the Author

Joshua Bolkan is contributing editor for Campus Technology, THE Journal and STEAM Universe. He can be reached at jbolkan@gmail.com.

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