Author Archives: Clark Barnett

About Clark Barnett

Clark Barnett has been an educator for 13 years. He currently creates and innovates with his 4th grade students in the Conejo Unified School District using 3D printing, arduino electronics, and whatever else they can imagine with. He agrees whole hardheartedly with Seymour Papert who said, "The role of the teacher is to create the conditions for invention rather than provide ready-made knowledge." Mr. Barnett earned his Master of Education degree in learning technologies from Pepperdine University.

Design and Process: 3D Printing in the Classroom

After our first earbud holder was printed last week my students really got excited about making their own. It didn’t take long before the 3D printers were up and running, printing several earbud holders at once. This provided many learning opportunities for all of us. Using Cubify Draw for the first time, I really had to figure out the workflow to get things moving. I ran into a problem with the program because once a file had been uploaded to the Cubify website it was Continue reading →

First Print of the Year

It’s a new year, and I have chosen a new theme for my blog. I have also decided to write about more than just 3D printing in the classroom…maybe. I doubt I will vary too much from 3D printing in the classroom because it is so amazing, but I realized that last year I had so much fun with 3D printing that I forgot to mention I was piloting a 1 to 1 “Bring Your Own Device” (BYOD) program where each student uses a tablet Continue reading →

3D Printing the Sonic Bloom

Last week a 3rd grade teacher (Ms. Klingel) popped into my classroom and told me she had an idea for a lesson. She was wondering if I would be willing to help incorporate 3D printing into the lesson. After a few minutes of figuring out what she wanted to do we had an idea for one of the best STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics) lesson’s that I have ever taught. In fact, I liked it so much that I decided to do the Continue reading →

A Treasure Trove and a Redesign

The last couple of weeks have dragged on with our interactive whiteboard marker. We have had a week off of school and have been stuck getting our design to print 100% the way we want it to. We’ve tried a few different software programs, had a Google Hangout with an expert, and tried several versions. We were close, but at a bit of a stand still. Then we had our standardized testing. I won’t go into the details on that or how I felt about Continue reading →

Working Prototypes

An Altoid tin makes a good interactive whiteboard marker. At last we have a working prototype. It may not look like we intended, but it works. After all this research and design I thought it would be a good idea to make sure the LEDs work. So, I used an Altoid tin, some wires, an LED, and a battery to rig something up. We were excited to get something to work. We fired up the projector and the accompanying software, and…nothing. It was a let Continue reading →

Small Victories

My students are making great progress with Interactive Whiteboard Markers. They have successfully overcome two obstacles that were slowing down progress. The first one may have been the most satisfying for them to accomplish. The original file that we downloaded from Thingiverse does not have a cap on the end. Therefore, we needed to fabricate one. This presents a host of wonderful problems for the students to solve. They have to come up with a plan on how they will make it work, design it Continue reading →

Authentic Learning

This week I had two parents tell me at different times that they were very happy with what I was doing in class. The first parent called and left a message. I’m not sure I’ve ever had a parent call and leave a voice message with the only purpose being to state how pleased they are with how I am teaching. I’ve had compliments in passing or in email, but never a phone message. It was clear that this mother was really appreciative of what Continue reading →


It has been a couple of weeks since I have attended the Annual CUE conference, and I’m finally having the time to process all of the learning that occurred. This was my first experience with the CUE conference, and my overall opinion of it is positive. There were plenty of options so I felt like I wasn’t going to see the same thing over and over again. I was able to find areas of education technology that interest me and offered resources to help me Continue reading →

Hacking the Pen

[dropcap]S[/dropcap]everal years ago I had the privilege to work with Dr. Carl. Technically, Dr. Carl was our site technician meaning that he was there to help keep our computers up and running. In reality he is an educator who is as passionate about education technology as I am. He was interested in Maker Education before it was called Maker Education. In a previous life, he made robots. If I remember correctly, he sold his robotics company and the technology that he helped create became Roomba. Continue reading →

Explaining 3D Printing

I love explaining 3D printing to people who have never really been exposed to it before. As I share all of the incredible things you can do with a 3D printer their facial expressions  go from bewilderment to pure imagination. I’m also amazed at how some people see the possibilities it presents to some while others clearly don’t get it. They think it’s neat, but they don’t make it personal. They can’t seem to think about how it can help them or what they can Continue reading →

3D Printed Entomology

When I first got the 3D printer my mind swam with different ideas of how to use it in my classroom. You can see my first brainstorm here. I find the process of choosing what actually gets used in the classroom to be interesting. I thought I had some really good ideas, and some were at the top of my list to get started on as soon as school began. Of course things change when they move from an idea to reality. Some things just don’t Continue reading →


Summertime is a magical time for teachers. We recharge, reflect, learn more about our craft, and do all the activities that we love to do but can’t get to during the year. This last summer was not much different for me. I took some classes on teaching science, took my kids on their first backpacking trip, and spent time at the beach. The big difference for me was that a new interest was seeded: 3D printing. Towards the end of the previous year I had Continue reading →