Photo of Tarot cards

Imax cinema space shuttle

3D being used for Car Design

Sketchup software

3rd Dimension

3D in the classroom, now that sounds like a gimmick, doesn’t it?

3D has been around for many years now, in the old days (well not that long ago) of coloured lenses it worked but caused eye strain and was not in full colour . A few years ago full colour 3D hit cinemas using polarized lenses in glasses and very quickly active shutter glasses at home, both of these methods are able to give full high definition pictures in full colour.

A couple of years ago 3D was introduced into a few schools to test how effective it really can be in schools. The answer was very effective; it was found that by using 3D the retention of information being absorbed by pupils was 35% higher in tests - information from eon reality (you could see it as the difference between a D grade or an A grade – NOW we have your attention! – not so much of a gimmick is it!)


How can we use 3D in a school environment?

Currently there are two main ways, the first is 3D movies, these are a way to teach about places and when combined with the rest of the SMILE room it helps a child to feel as if they are really there and is a wonderful start to projects to inspire ideas and really understand the environment they are experiencing. With amazing films from the BBC and IMAX it is now possible to explore areas of this planet and beyond that you could never visit as a school trip.

The second way is to display items, if you are talking about a tree growing from a seed, you can show this in 3D to explain and show how the roots start to grow and then the leaves, following how the sun's light and rain feed the tree to allow it to grow. Any artefact can be shown in 3D, which means things you would not be able to show physically can still be seen and appreciated. Please see the two videos for a better understanding of 3D in the classroom.


3D for Design & Invention.

Introducing children to design and invention, and enabling them to develop an interest and skills in these can be very challenging.

Using 3D in design and engineering has pushed the boundaries of visual concepts and the ability to more accurately design and test products. With the aid of 3D glasses we can now really use 3D to develop designs and concepts without the need of expensive models.

With the use of programs like Sketchup,pupils can produce their own designs and then see them in real time 3D using the SMILE room. We can also show them designs, buildings and how things work, after all what better way to understand how something works than to see it in action. The UK has a rich history of design and innovation, it is important that we nurture this passion in children so they may continue pushing the boundaries and maybe even become the next James Dyson.



A short video explaining the benifits of 3D in schools.


Shelfield Community Academy who are already using 3D in the Classroom.

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SMILE room Project - 27 Cresswell Drive, Hilperton, Trowbridge, Wiltshire BA14 7TN