The History of 3D Printing and Its Role in Modern STEM Education

November 18, 2023
• Written by
Chemistry Cody


Imagine a world where your ideas can take physical shape right before your eyes. This is the realm of 3D printing, a technology that has not only revolutionized manufacturing but also opened a new frontier in STEM education. In this blog post, we'll embark on a journey through the history of 3D printing and explore how it is transforming learning in our after-school STEM program.

The Dawn of 3D Printing: A Historical Perspective

The story of 3D printing began in the 1980s, born from the vision of inventors seeking to materialize objects layer by layer. In 1986, Charles Hull invented stereolithography (SLA), a process that paved the way for 3D printing by creating objects from liquid resin using ultraviolet light. This breakthrough laid the foundation for rapid prototyping, allowing designers to bring their ideas to life swiftly.

The Evolution: From Industrial to Desktop Revolution

Initially, 3D printing was a tool reserved for industries, used for creating prototypes and complex parts. However, the turn of the millennium marked a significant shift. The introduction of fused deposition modeling (FDM) technology made 3D printers more accessible, leading to the proliferation of desktop 3D printers. This democratization of technology sparked a maker movement, inspiring hobbyists and educators alike.

3D Printing in Education: A New Dimension of Learning

The integration of 3D printing into educational settings has been a game-changer. In schools and after-school programs, it offers an unparalleled opportunity for experiential learning. Students are no longer mere passive learners; they become creators, engineers, and problem-solvers.

Our After-School STEM Program: Shaping Future Innovators

In our after-school STEM program, we harness the potential of 3D printing to ignite a passion for learning and innovation. Our students embark on projects that range from designing simple objects to solving real-world problems. Through this hands-on experience, they gain a deep understanding of STEM concepts, preparing them for future academic and career paths in technology and engineering.

The Impact: Skills for the Future

The benefits of integrating 3D printing into STEM education are manifold. It fosters creativity, enhances spatial thinking, and encourages trial and error – skills critical in the 21st century. Moreover, it provides a tangible connection between theoretical knowledge and real-world application, making learning both engaging and effective.

Join Us in the Journey of Innovation

As we continue to explore the possibilities of 3D printing in education, we invite you to be a part of this exciting journey. Our after-school STEM program is more than just a learning experience; it's a gateway to the future of innovation. Whether you're a parent, educator, or a curious mind, join us in shaping the innovators of tomorrow.


The history of 3D printing is not just a tale of technological advancement; it's a testament to human ingenuity and the endless possibilities of the mind. As we integrate this incredible tool into our STEM education, we open doors to new ways of learning, thinking, and creating. Join us in this journey of discovery and innovation.

All Things Science Club

Are you ready to give your child a head start in the world of STEM? Enroll them in our after-school STEM program today and watch them transform their ideas into reality with 3D printing. Together, let's build a brighter, more innovative future!