Curricular Materials

Creating 3D Plant Models Using Tinkercad and Fusion 360


This 3D modeling project addresses the disconnect between science, design and technology, and how high school students can benefit from innovative learning experiences in plant and agriculture sciences that integrate these disciplines while gaining interest in and skills for future STEAM careers. Students use the software Tinkercad or Fusion 360 to create 3D models of species of research importance at the Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, MO. Students work in collaborative teams made of self-identified scientists, technophiles, and artists. A STEAM approach is applied in which students’ projects are focused not only on the final product but also on the artistic creative process. Students interact with researchers and present their projects at public and scientific events to practice their science communication skills. By using 3D models in augmented and virtual reality, the students learn about the applicability of their own products in education and technology. This project can be competed in 3-4 weeks or over the course of the semester depending on the availability of classroom time. By integrating design and technology with science, students learn that art and design are an essential part of plant and agriculture sciences to prepare for their future STEAM careers.

Student 3D Model of Milkweed

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Project Curricula Details

Youth Motivation and Interests in STEM
Target Setting(s)
High school (9-12)
Target Participant(s)
Youth / students
Life sciences