One of the most exciting ways 3D printing is innovating existing fields is through its implementation in schools and education. With printers becoming cheaper and more user-friendly, the technology is no longer reserved for higher education studies in science and engineering. 3D printers can literally bring historical objects, artworks, mechanisms, you name it, into the classroom, and the potential of such hands-on learning is insurmountable. It was recognizing this possibility that inspired 7 school friends to combine their skills and start 3Dexter – an edtech company seeking to bring 3D printing to the core of India’s education curriculum.
How it all started
After starting their initiative just last year in 2015, Delhi-based 3Dexter has now received an investment of $150,000 from ICA Edu Skills, a company primarily focused on providing widespread and high-quality training to the accounting industry.
Dr. Narendra Kumar Shyamsukha, the founder and Chairman of the investors ICA Edu Skills, spoke about how 3Dexter fits into India’s vision for the future;
We are living in a fast- changing technological world. Investment in technology is the need of the hour. If India wants to move up in the comity of nations, we need to improve our educational infrastructure, and technology is its most important component, today. Technological upgradation needs our immediate attention. We understand the national vision of ‘Skill India’ and ‘Digital India.
This venture with 3Dexter is just one of a growing list of edtech startup companies that ICA Edu Skills have been exploring this year. Added to the list for 2016 so far are the Myly app, connecting educators and their students, and Open Door Education, a program that offers tools to create, evaluate and share class assessments.
What 3Dexter programs do
3Dexter’s 3D printing program has been nurtured by, and is in compliance with, 3 out of the 5 school boards currently active in India; the CBSE (Central Board of Secondary Education), IB (International Baccalaureate) and ICSE (International Certificate of Secondary Education). The curriculum was created to support educators in five different ways: from the foundations of the concept, right through to long-term resources. First, the team send child-friendly trainers to schools to make sure students are familiar with the technology. Second, 3Dexter launch quarterly projects which incite motivation and inspiration from pupils. Third, they provide lesson plans for teachers, while also supplying suitable resources. And finally, an online portal consolidates all of this information for access at any time.
A vision for the future
Shantanu Kwatra, one of 3Dexter’s founders and Director of the company summed up 3Dexter’s training in the following comment;
The way we have developed this curriculum in sync with leading school boards like CBSE, ICSE, and IB, helps us integrate this technology at the grassroots level and introduce futuristic skills to students. Our plan is simple: add dimensions to learning to empower schools and to support the budding generation of new changemakers and innovators to visualise, design, and create.
Though by no means the only company in India to share this vision, (notable competitors are Edukart, classteacher.com, Embibe to name a few) 3Dexter’s investment from ICA certainly ensures that 3Dexter can continue to broaden their horizons, and perhaps even eventually bring their program to younger children, primary schools and colleges. 3DPI certainly wish them all the best in their endeavors and hope to hear more news from them soon.
Featured image is of students trying out 3Dexter’s 3D printer, photo via: 3Dexter