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How to use balsa wood in education

August 14, 2019

Battery powered, remote controled balsa wood boat

Are you looking for a classroom material that’s safe and easy for all ages to work with and relevant to almost every teaching principle? 

Balsa wood is an organic and non-toxic material that’s easy to work with and assemble using normal glues. That makes it perfect for modelling and projects, suiting students of all ages!

Balsa is easy to cut and sandpaper and takes almost any type of finish or decoration. A little research shows that there is an infinite use for wood in all sorts of educational projects and activities.

It's especially suited to STEAM educational applications and the prototyping of simple (and complicated) designs. As students research and iterate STEAM models made of balsa wood, the projects are easy to adjust and modified while on their way to the finished article.

Balsa wood – from Kindy to University…and beyond!

  • Logic Blocks are used to learn metric principles by demonstrating place value and base ten concepts. Children gain knowledge of the fundamentals of regrouping and place value with the use of cubes, units, rods and flats.
  • Unit Blocks99 are enough blocks for a whole class to learn with and have fun. Without knowing it, children are learning the STEAM principles entrenched in the Australian Curriculum. Working together or individually and building structures stimulates minds in the areas of consideration, logical thinking, social structure and harmony, creativity, design, spatial awareness and communication.
  • Balsascapes are safe and easy to decorated by children of all ages - using just about any media. The 3D Pieces can be moved around in their slots to tell a story or create a scene for fun and are a great learning aid for the classroom, OSHC, kindergarten.  It is a clean and sustainable resource that readily takes paint, pen, pencil or crayon.  The number of possible scenes is limitless!
  • Learning with Balsa Model Projects are designed to support learning and complement the Australian School Curriculum (years 3-7). Projects come unassembled and individually packed, ready for students to use their imagination, creativity and skills to complete.  Models range from Mosques to Churches – Ships to Billy Carts.

 

  • Balsa Packs and FreeplayBalsa Boxes are a wonderful timber resource for any age. There is a large range of Packs crammed with all sorts of Balsa Wood shapes for fun and educational activities or use by the more discerning project maker.  

 

  • BalsaTangrams help teach students to use a manipulative set of skills to construct and understand geometric ideas. Using tangrams can also help students develop their spatial skills as they manipulate the pieces and note the relationships, earn about flips, slides and turns (reflections, rotations, and translations). Students create vivid mental images, and educators believe Tangrams engage both sides of the brain at once!
  • Stacking Blocks are not only beneficial because they develop hand-eye coordination or social skills, but they’re also beneficial because during block-stacking toddlers and young children begin to think like mathematicians. More specifically, they learn the most basic concepts of geometry.
  • School projects. Project-based learning is “constructivist” learning, which finds that learning is deeper and more meaningful when students are involved in constructing their knowledge. Students select a topic that interests them within the required content framework and are responsible for creating their project plan.

Balsa wood can be used for projects like surfboard making and shaping to moving Animata models; to remote-controlled boats and planes.

There is no limit to how balsa wood can be used in education.  I hope you get some good idea from this blog but if you have an idea and need a hand realising it – please drop us a line.  We’re happy to help!

Balsa surfboard

Balsa RC boat

 

Student BoatsBalsa Plane

 

Logic Blocks

Billy Cart model parts

Billy Cart model parts

Tangram

Tangram

Economy Pack

Balsascape



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