A few weeks ago I received a neat model from Toronto Middle School teacher, and SketchUp enthusiast, Geoffrey Winship. It has a gear box that raises and lowers three fun Pac-Man characters. I made a little recording of how I played with it, including speeding up and slowing down the various motors.
Middle school kids building simple motors and gears to make a fun machine - if they had this when I was in school I imagine a lot of us might have ended up on different carer paths!
Here's what Geoffrey wrote about this project:
In the Toronto District School Board, at Essex Public School, design and technology is alive and well in Mr. Winship's Science class. Each year, students in grade seven learn about building models using wheels, axles, and cams. Students design the model and then actually build it using saws, drill presses and other power tools and hand tools. The general problem is to design a child's toy that turns rotary motion into linear motion. Each student is also required to hand-draw the model showing orthographic and isometric views. For this project, students could also produce a supplementary set of sketches using Google SketchUp. Bonus marks were given to students who could use animation to drive the model. This model was designed by a grade seven student who was introduced to SketchUp for the first time this year. Grade seven and eight students are given lessons in 2D and 3D drawing using SketchUp and given opportunities to develop their skills. The first time he used SketchUp, this student produced drawings of a vehicle that he built in the shop. This is the second model made by this student, his first using Sketchy Physics, and is an accurate representation of the real cam toy.