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Hour of Code: 3DTin

Posted by on November 19, 2014

I don’t hear a lot of buzz about 3DTin, but I should. It’s a well-kept secret your 5th grade and up will love.





modeling, programming




Google’s 3DTin is 3D modeling in a browser. It goes out of its way to be user-friendly. It requires no installation as long as you browse in Google Chrome or Firefox with WebGL support. Just type in address bar and start designing. Any operating system. All of its functionality is free. … as long as the sketch is shared under Creative Commons. On the right sidebar is a running list (with Browse command) to view what others have created in 3DTin.

Included are tutorials, categorized by beginner to advanced. Have students watch all of them. Make this as student-directed a website as possible. Premium members get private storage–everyone else: All sketches are stored in cloud. You can access them from anywhere and share with unique URL. Then, export to standard file formats–STL, OBJ, DAE–which can be imported in other modeling tools.

The interface is simple: Choose 3D shapes from a huge library of templates and add them to your sketch. All through an intuitive interface. If you still need help, check out the quick tutorial.

Here’s a good tutorial from 3DTin’s YouTube channel on creating basic cube:

Has anyone used it in their classrooms? Ive seen students try it out, but no teachers yet have used it for projects (unlike Sketch Up, Scratch, and a few others).

Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-8 technology for 15 years. She is the editor/author of dozens of tech ed resources including a K-8 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum, and dozens of books on how to integrate technology into education. She is webmaster for six blogs, CSG Master Teacher, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, CAEP reviewer, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, a tech ed columnist for, and a weekly contributor to TeachHUB. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.

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