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Free Distance Learning Projects and Resources for High School Engineering Teachers


Jun 18 2020

While some schools will be back in traditional classrooms next year, many schools across the country will continue to provide either full-time or part-time distance learning in the fall.

Since the pandemic began in the U.S. back in March, there has been a plethora of resource listicles for teachers and students.

However, since online engineering design education is what we’re all about at SolidProfessor, we compiled a list of free resources specifically for high school engineering teachers to use during distance learning (and beyond).

Engage your high school engineering students with hands-on projects at home

It can be tricky to come up with engineering projects that your high students can work on during distance learning. We’ve compiled a list of some of our favorite free engineering design projects that require little to no materials.

Students can work on these projects on their own or virtually in groups. You can even turn the following projects into a design competition to keep your engineering students motivated.

Understanding the Engineering Design Process Hands-on Activity
In this hands-on activity, students will be asked to practice using each step in the engineering design process. A list of materials needed and worksheets are included.

  • Source: Teach Engineering
  • Grade level: 9-10
  • Materials needed: Index cards, scissors
  • CAD software required: No
DOWNLOAD FREE POSTER: From Ideation to Creation: The Product Design Life Cycle

3 Customizable Design Challenges for Students – Sunglasses, Halloween Costume Accessory, and a Sled
Encourage your students to develop a solution-focused mindset with three seasonal design challenges. Each project includes a prompt, ways to customize each project to make it simpler or more challenging, and a grading rubric.

  • Source: SolidProfessor
  • Grade level: 9-12
  • Materials needed: None
  • CAD software required: Yes. Any CAD software is compatible.

FIRST Robotics @ Home Activities
Explore FIRST Robotics’ hands-on activities that students can do at home. Their projects range from PreK to grade 12. Each project comes with a lesson plan, design brief, and a grading rubric.

  • Source: FIRST Robotics
  • Grade level: 9-12
  • Materials needed: Most projects don’t require any materials.
  • CAD software required: No, however using a CAD software is encouraged for increased difficulty on some projects.

Modeling a Toy Train in SketchUp
This free video tutorial helps walk students through how to build a 3D model of a toy train in SketchUp. SketchUp is a free 3D modeling software.

  • Source: Teachers Pay Teachers
  • Grade level: 9-12
  • Materials needed: None
  • CAD software required: Yes, SketchUp.
FIND MORE PROJECTS: 100+ Fun Projects for Engineering Students of Any Age

Find more projects

Help prepare your students for a software certification exam as a distance learning project

Certified SOLIDWORKS Associate (CSWA) Exam Prep Guide
This free e-guide includes 34 tips for your students from SOLIDWORKS certification holders. They’ll learn how to best prepare, practice, and pass the CSWA exam.

  • Source: SolidProfessor
  • Grade Level: 9-12 (best for mid- to advanced-level engineering learners)
  • Materials needed: None
  • CAD software required: There is no software required to get value from this e-guide; however, students will need access to SOLIDWORKS to properly prepare and take the exam.

SOLIDWORKS CSWA Certification Exam Practice Test
Help your students prepare for the CSWA exam with this practice test from SOLIDWORKS.

  • Source: SOLIDWORKS
  • Grade Level: 9-12 (best for mid- to advanced-level engineering learners)
  • Materials needed: None
  • CAD software required: Yes, SOLIDWORKS.

Certified SOLIDWORKS Professional (CSWP) Exam Prep Guide
This free e-guide includes 34 exam tips and tricks for your students who want to take the CSWP exam.

  • Source: SolidProfessor
  • Grade Level: 9-12 (best for advanced-level engineering learners)
  • Materials needed: None
  • CAD software required: There is no software required to get value from this e-guide; however, students will need access to SOLIDWORKS to properly prepare and take the exam.
GET CERTIFIED: With a SolidProfessor membership, you can help your students get certified from home by the end of the semester. Check out our online certification exam prep courses and practice tests for the SOLIDWORKS CSWA, AutoCAD, Inventor, and Revit User Certifications.

Your students can start designing in CAD software more effectively during distance learning with the help of keyboard shortcuts

SOLIDWORKS Keyboard Shortcuts Cheat Sheet
This free cheat sheet is chock-full of SOLIDWORKS keyboard shortcuts that will help your students design more efficiently. Plus, it includes a blank sheet so they can add their favorite shortcuts, too.

Autodesk Inventor Keyboard Shortcuts Cheat Sheet
With this free Autodesk Inventor Keyboard Shortcuts Cheat Sheet, your students will be able to use popular Inventor keyboard shortcuts to work faster and more efficiently. Plus, it includes a blank sheet so students can add their own shortcuts.

Autodesk AutoCAD Keyboard Shortcuts Guide
To design more efficiently in AutoCAD, share this PDF of Autodesk AutoCAD keyboard shortcuts with your students.

  • Source: Autodesk
  • Grade Level: 9-12
  • Materials needed: None

Autodesk Fusion 360 Keyboard Shortcuts
Explore this online list of Autodesk Fusion 360 keyboard shortcuts so that your students can commit time-saving commands to memory.

  • Source: Autodesk
  • Grade Level: 9-12
  • Materials needed: None

Ready-to-use-curriculum

READY-TO-USE CURRICULUM: Bring Online Engineering Design Curriculum to Your K-12 School

Additional resources to help keep your engineering students engaged in the era of distance learning

Common Curriculum Lesson Planner
If you’re looking for a way to organize your engineering design lesson plans online, try Common Curriculum Basic for a free version of their platform.

Poll Everywhere – Real-time Class Polling System
Engage your students during class by asking them questions that they can respond to in real-time. K-12 educators can get this tool for free. The free version includes unlimited questions with up to 40 responders.

Microburst Learning EmployABILITY Soft Skills Online Course
Many high school engineering programs aim to prepare their students with the technical skills required for high-wage, in-demand careers after graduation. But soft skills matter, too. Share this free course with your students to make sure they’re ready for the job search.

If you need access to high-quality online engineering design courses, exercises, and quizzes, SolidProfessor is here to help.

Transitioning to online learning can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be. At SolidProfessor, we’ve been educating the next generation of engineers, architects, and manufacturers through our online curriculum for nearly two decades.

Our expert-guided online courses and dedicated onboarding team are ready to help you confidently prepare your students for college and careers while teaching from a distance.

DOWNLOAD NOW: Essential Curriculum for Engineering Design Educators During Distance Learning

 

Your Go-to Distance Learning Curriculum

In the era of distance learning, teachers are expected to have a plan for everything. But with a SolidProfessor membership, you won’t have to worry about creating an online curriculum for your engineering, architecture, or manufacturing classes. We’ve got you covered.

Madie Norris Forcier
Madie Norris Forcier

About the Author

Madie Norris Forcier

SolidProfessor content writer and self-appointed World’s Greatest Dog Mom

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