Teaching 3D shapes with Augmented Reality

Discover how one of the best schools in Thailand make geometry lessons more engaging and fun using augmented reality.

The complexity of 3D Geometry is often seen as one the most difficult areas in mathematics. It requires students to have great skills, such as visualizing and reasoning with shapes on a plane without four dimensions mixed up into your head!

The addition of Augmented Reality

Last year, Rugby School Thailand’s Head of Design & Technology in Senior School noticed that Augmented Reality, and an export function of the rendering software, had been added to the 3D CAD (3-dimensional computer-aided design) software used at the School. He trialed it with some Year 9 & 10 students as way for them to demonstrate manufacturing intent and understand 3D form better.

  Teaching 3D shapes with Augmented Reality
Augmented Reality allow students to understand 3D form better

The students embraced the technology, which sparked an innovative solution for IGCSE and A Level groups, who had lost time in the studio for their coursework during Covid. The D&T teachers quickly realised how effective the integration of Augmented Reality was with student work.

The AR design files could be shared via email or airdrop, allowing students to open them on a device and instantly see rendered 3D CAD projects in ‘reality’. The students were then able to independently problem-solve, virtually testing products to see if they work in their intended environment.

The benefits of bringing AR into D&T

Bringing Augmented Reality into the Design & Technology studios has given students freedom to be more creative, allowing them to resize and move models within selected scenes, share designs for peer review and work with clients for real-time feedback and input.  Updates and developments using AR are recorded and evidenced through device cameras, increasing student confidence in their final coursework.

From senior students to prep school students

Having seen the benefit of Augmented Reality for Senior students, we have also rolled this initiative out for younger Prep School students, who can now see sketched ideas come to life in classrooms, allowing them to understand 3D form and how light interacts with it. Teaching the effects of light on 3D forms is particularly difficult and this has been a revolutionary approach, showing students in an adaptable and engaging way. The result has been better rendering and stronger communication skills from students. 

  Teaching 3D shapes with Augmented Reality
Senior and Prep school students understand 3D form and how light interacts with it

3D models have now been embedded into the School’s Design & Technology websites allowing students to interact fully with them using devices. The designs are uploaded through the 3D AR Base interactive document, as well as via QR codes to scan. This cutting-edge initiative has notably improved outcomes in design work, with staff seeing a 10-15% increase in average class grades.

An award-winning approach to teaching

The ISC International School Awards 2023 have recognised this powerful addition to Design & Technology teaching at Rugby School Thailand shortlisting the School for “Innovation in Creativity and Learning” for their use of Augmented Reality. To find out more about Rugby School Thailand’s award-winning education, click here.

Bringing technology into different subjects can be a powerful tool when used in the right way.

Written by

Rugby School Thailand

Rugby School Thailand

Rugby School Thailand is an international day and boarding school, whose approach is based upon the world-renowned British private school model, and whose curriculum is drawn from the best of the England & Wales National Curriculum and the UK’s Independent Schools’ Curriculum. It is the first and only school to take the name of its prestigious parent, Rugby School (UK), which was founded 450 years ago and from where the world-famous sport originated.

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