Why didn’t we have this when I was in school? MotionKit is a Kickstarter movement to bring maker technology into the classroom at a price that makes sense. Ever wanted to play with a CNC? Who hasn’t? It is the driving force behind 3D printing. The use cases are endless.

I think I made a keychain with a drill press in middle school. And we all thought we were awesome. To show you how nerdy it became, everyone put their name on their chain. Me? I etched bookworm…

Oh, it gets better. High school in Alabama. I took my nerdiness and leveled up. A couple friends of mine joined along, and we placed second at state in robotics. I also managed to snag second in multimedia before it was everywhere.

You’re thinking at this point, serious pocket protector. Nah, think about it. How do you get out of class without question and do what you want for days and weeks at a time? Leave school, order pizzas. I think I went into conniving territory with that, but work the system you have.

It is also the most fun you can have. Making. Tinkering. Breaking things and then fixing them.

MotionKit

The kit is designed to be the all-in-one solution to harness the power of computerized motion. Don’t worry, it doesn’t come with a textbook designed to put kids to sleep. The company buckled down and made it completely interactive.

Every line of code. Each circuit.

You won’t have to learn serious Google-fu to construct the CNC. Each one comes complete with the Motion Blocks, bearings, belts, pulleys, microcontrollers and the list goes on.

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It comes with everything but the power supply. Your neighborhood electronics store will have them. Easy button? Amazon.

Need a demo? How about a timelapse?

Here is the kit fully assembled:

Keep Learning

While there isn’t any experience required, you can know enough to be dangerous and keep extending the kit. From a one-motor project that doubles as a camera slider to a laser engraver. Thanks, MotionKit. I now regret my keychain story…

motionkit camera slider

To show off the endless possibilities, MotionKit put together a small video showing off DIY decorations via the CNC.

Check out the blog post on the project, complete with the code necessary. Learn by emulating and then once kids or my inner kid sees how it is done, extend out.

It is a part of the MotionKit Virtual Classroom. Come now. You didn’t think they were just going to stop at a CNC machine, did you? We live in app world. It offers not the only the resources to learn about each part, but the why.

That’s the most overlooked question in education. Why? And if you know me, I’m going to ask why. Repeatedly. To the point, it’s insufferable.

Supporting MotionKit

MotionKit isn’t just for classrooms, but it’s easy to see the applications. STEM is either underfunded or terribly misguided in public education. The kit offers to teach you all things motion with a CNC.

motionblock maker technology

In the end, you’ll be building your own multi-axis CNC machines, wiring, altering firmware, programming and eventually explaining your creative decisions on laser engraving your desk. Don’t stress it kids. Not your fault it was the closest thing around.

div-Kickstarter

The campaign went live over the weekend and is looking for a funding goal of $25,000. That’s pennies compared to what other campaigns ask and breach with ease.

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Multiple tiers are available. Early bird specials are set for $179. Need it for Christmas? There are a limited amount available at $249. If you have the patience I don’t; you can snap one up for $199 with a ship date of April 2016.

MotionKit also offers a donation tier. At $349, you get a complete kit, and one is donated to an underfunded STEM program. Deliveries for the tier is also April 2016.

For educators looking to spend their budget before it evaporates, MotionKit offers a 10-pack complete with a custom syllabus. You just thought the computer lab was cool in your school. Imagine driving teachers and helicopter parents nuts with 10 laser engravers whirring.

The maker movement is here to stay. While it’s easy to say kids these days are consumed by social media, don’t discount their willingness to learn. It’s on us to be engaging. Memorizing from a textbook or creating a CNC machine? Which is the science class you always wanted?

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