This year our class has participated in the inaugural year of an exciting endeavor: #InventionHour! Invention Hour is a new activity I have created, similar to Genius Hour, but with a more specific goal: to learn the process of invention and actually invent an authentic solution to a real problem. [Click here to read more about #InventionHour !]
Despite being very similar to Scientific Method and the Engineering Cycle, the “Invention Process” was a very new concept for most students, so as a first step we decided to undergo the invention process together to learn the process before working on our own individual or group inventions. The real problem we identified in our classroom was this: since the Lenovo Bluetooth keyboards caused problems, we switched this year to using USB wired keyboards. However, that meant we also needed tablet stands. I had ordered adjustable metal stands off of Amazon for $8-9 each, but soon discovered that there was a design flaw in them which caused them to eventually break or fall apart even with regular, responsible use. So we came up with an idea… could we invent a stand that would still allow us to have multiple angles, while being durable and inexpensive and with no moving parts to add complexity and chance of breaking?
In the end, we completed the entire Invention Process (including publicizing our invention) by inventing the “Tri-Stand” — a durable one-piece solution that allows multiple angles and can be printed on a 3D printer for less than $2!