{School Projects and KNK

If you have little people at home, you know all about the dreaded school project. As a teacher, I’m a firm believer that the work should be kid-produced. I’ll never forget the time my daughter brought in her project that she did 100% by herself (except that I used the KNK to cut out the letters of the title for her display board, but she had to arrange and glue them on) and there were all these other projects that looked professionally done. On the other hand, I think if parents and children co-create a project, where a kid is doing a majority of the work, then it is a good experience for both the parent and the child.

My son came home and said he needed to build the Getty museum. No problem, right? Well here is the Getty Museum, for those of you (like me) who were unfamiliar with it and the architecture of it.

Son, could you pick anything any more difficult to build? I don’t even think we have that many white legos. And these buildings aren’t exactly square. Or rectangle.

As we were perusing through Google, feeling more and more overwhelmed, we saw this piece of it:


And I thought, well, that looks more doable. If I create the buildings in 3-D, cut them out with my machine, and he puts it all together himself, then it is still a project he has built with his own hands, right? (just say yes for me, okay?)

So I figured out I needed 3-D buildings that were higher on one side and shorter on the other. A quick google search led me to this:


I traced it into MTC and eliminated all the stuff in the middle and moved the window, turning it sideways. I think this is originally supposed to be some train station, but it will do for our purposes:

I added some fold lines and changed the window, but it’s basically the same shape (turned 90 degrees)

Then I wondered how to do those columns. Another Google search led me to this:

I just took a screen shot off a piece of a free paper model of the Parthenon, did a trace in MTC and came up with these:

Sideways again. Sorry.

Hmm, then there was the roof… well, again, MTC had the shape for me in the shapes tab and a little stretching and stuff and I had roof tiles:


Then there was the pool. That was easy: a rectangle and two circles welded together:


Then we we got it all done (lots of gluing), we realized it needed plants. I tried to dye cotton balls green and it just wasn’t working. I know I have green spray paint around here somewhere, but couldn’t find it anywhere.

But then, this little guy wanted to come out to play:

He came the other day and when I started this project, I just didn’t have the time to get to know the new machine. But then we needed plants. So this morning, I set him up and installed the Zing driver and it took all of 5 minutes. It was easy peasy. The computer didn’t recognize the Zing right away. I’m running a Macbook Pro with Parallels and Windows 7 so sometimes connecting USB peripherals can confuse the system. No worries. I just turned off the Zinger, unplugged the USB, then plugged it all back in and it worked perfectly.

I tend to not like to read directions. I figured I’ve run enough machines I can figure this baby out… Well, I’m the dummy who tried to set the origin with the laser light. Um, yeah. That doesn’t work. I didn’t put the blade in yet, but sent it a job to see what it would do and yep, fully would have decorated that brand new mat. So when I finally had my duh moment and figured out the origin part, I thought, what the heck, let’s give it a shot.

Do as I say and not as I do, okay? I’m going to tell you to run a test cut. Especially if you are unfamiliar with your machine. I didn’t and I probably got extremely lucky because when I got done, I realized I hadn’t set any of the force settings, but apparently what was selected worked because I got this my very first shot with the blade in:


Oops, wrong picture. That’s the Zing cutting its very first cut. I felt like I should video it for posterity or something, but I didn’t.

Oh here we are. Now, it’s a nice close up and I can tell by looking at it that my blade was sticking out a bit too far. I fixed that.

Also, I couldn’t figure out how in the heck to put this together. It’s a Lettering Delights quill flower and I couldn’t figure out which end went on the quill, so I gave up and used a file Sandy gave us at the retreat awhile back. I don’t know if she has shared it so I won’t post it until I ask her, but she basically gave us a file with some strips and some petals. You pick the petal you want and select it and do a array in KNK studio, or use the duplicate feature in MTC. Then you get this:

I duplicated a sheet of them and came up with a million of these:

(my second cut with Zing).

These are supposed to be chrysanthemums but I used green and turned them into bushes.

Here is the final project:


And here are the cutting files that were used in MTC, KNK, and PDF formats:

Getty Museum Project

My son had to glue a lot of pieces together and arrange them on a cardboard lid we found. He’s nine, so it isn’t perfect,  (and he gets his stellar glue skills from his mother…note the sarcasm please), which is fine. I want it to be something he produced. And those columns. Don’t even get me started on those. I finally had to help him with those, but mine weren’t coming out much better. We didn’t buy anything and used supplies around the house (as we were told to do) and I think he ended up with a decent project.

Whoa. That was a long-winded post. Sorry about that.

I’m all about two birds with one stone, so not only is this his project, but it also became mine too. Especially since I played with the new Zing. I’ll be talking more and more about it on my blog, but my first initial impression? I LOVE it!! (and no one paid me to say that, nor was I financially compensated in any way, though I’m happy to take money if you want to give it to me.) See you next month!!

14 thoughts on “{School Projects and KNK

  1. THIS IS GREAT to have LOL for a mom of an 18, 8 and 6 year old. The little ones projects haven’t started YET but I know they are coming…dreading that until I saw this post! HAHAHA!
    love hugs and prayers

  2. What a wonderful project! Love the opportunities we have to participate with our children (and for some, grandchildren) on activities such as this. You both did such a great job!!!

  3. Great project, Deb! The plants look like they turned out great! Congrats on the getting a Zing, BTW 😛 I hope he’s getting along well, with your Mac 😀

  4. Awesome!! I betcha your boy child walked in all tall and beaming with his project! 🙂
    …aaand…is that a claymation of you I see standing by the pond??? LOL!!! 😉 Glad your having fun with your Zinger!

  5. Boy child has a great mom. He is putting in a lot of work on this. I need to catch up – I didn’t know you got a zing. When are you putting the crap room addition on the house? One more machine and you will need to tell the kids they have to share a room!

  6. What a great story, Deb. As a former teacher, I can so appreciate the school projects your children have to do. I loved your enthusiasm and your fearlessness at tackling the Zing out of the box. Gives me inspiration to get after my Groove-E which has sat on the table for a LONG time.
    Thanks for sharing and for sharing the files. You did a GREAT job.

  7. OMG! I am simply flabbergasted! No WAY could I have done what you did…let alone my child put it all together like that! Wonderful job!

  8. Awesome Job almost makes me wish I have a school kids in the house again…. almost but… 🙂 I was a OM and DI coach we did lots of out of the box thinking. I kinda do miss it.
    Loveed ALL the pictures thanks for sharing!

  9. Having kids at home lets you “play” with things you might not otherwise. Good job to both of you!

  10. WOW! I am just in total awe of the building you made! That quilled flower thingie? I have a punch for one, and it says to cut 2 of them (12 in. long) out, and then glue the 2 together…”trying” to space it so that all the spaces between the “flower points” on the first strip are covered. Then just start rolling it up with a quilling pin (or is it pen)?

  11. All I can say is that your son has a lot of patience to glue all those roof tiles in place. Nice mission –

  12. I really believe that this project helps develop young skills so much, Thank you for sharing.

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