Print It Forward: 3D Printer Fundraising Kit

Update: Applications due November 14th.

Do you want a 3D printer for your school or classroom? Do you want your students to have the power to turn their ideas into reality? Is cost the only thing holding you back?

I want to help by sending one US K12 public school a Print It Forward: 3D Printer Fundraising Kit. The kit is a free set of 3D printed models for you to use as donor rewards for your fundraising efforts to purchase a 3D printer. Once you have the 3D printer you print out a set of models and make the same offer to another educator.


How Does It Work?
-You send me an email at from your school email address and convince me of why you want a 3D printer for your school/classroom and how you will use the kit to raise a minimum of $750 for a 3D printer. (You give permission to post the why portion on this blog.)
-If I pick your school/classroom, your principal sends me an email from a school email address granting you permission to run the fundraiser.
-I send you the items for free via Priority Mail to a US K12 public school mailing address.
-You raise funds using the kit content as rewards for donors.
-You purchase a 3D printer and 3 color rolls of filament.
-You print out a set of models comparable to what you received in the first 3 months of owning your 3D printer.
-You offer a Print It Forward: 3D Printer Fundraising Kit to another educator with the same conditions.
-Optional: Continue the success of your Print It Forward: 3D Printer Fundraising efforts by printing a second kit.



I believe that every student should have learning experiences that empower them to design, make and share their ideas. 3D printers are an awesome tool to enable students to become inventors and makers. I frequently hear educators say they are trying to get a 3D printer or that they wish they had a 3D printer for their students. I thought about trying to get a sponsor to give away a 3D printer but realized that would only help a single school or classroom. I want every student to have access to a 3D printer which means coming up with a plan that is scalable. I believe if that parents and community members can actually see and touch the 3D printed objects they will be more likely to donate. The Print It Forward: 3D Printer Fundraising Kit is obviously influenced by the Pay It Forward idea but it is also rooted in the original RepRap concept. Adrian Bowyer developed the RepRap project in 2005 at Bath University to create a self-replicating device. The idea was to build a 3D printer that could then print the parts for other 3D printers. That project has led directly to most of the consumer 3D printers that are available today. There are currently several quality printers available commercially for as low as $599. With shipping, 3 rolls of filament, tools and supplies the total cost should be under $750. I estimate that with less than $50 in filament and shipping, I can help another educator meet that fundraising goal.

Important Notes 
-The models in this kit are being provided for you free of charge and are intended for you to use as rewards for donations or other fundraising incentives and not as direct sales. Many of the models in the kit are licensed as non-commercial. I believe this use counts as non-commercial. If you are a designer of one of the models and object, let me know by email and I will substitute in a different model.
-Models in the kit are not for kids under 5.
-I am a teacher trying this idea out on my personal blog and have spent about 100 hours of printing time on it.  This is a proof of concept. If it works and there is interest, I might recruit sponsors, designers and others folks that want to help to the cause.
-The US part is mainly because of international shipping charges. The K12 public school part is because that is the environment where I teach and think it gives me the best chance to vet who is applying.
-If you like the idea and want to try it out on your own, feel free.

Do you have any suggestions? Let me know in the comments or contact me @DesignMakeTeach on Twitter.