Drawing has never been so advanced and intuitive with the advent of 3D pens for kids. These ordinary looking pens help you achieve the extraordinary.
For those who are new to this, these pens allow you to draw things exactly as you imagine them using heated plastic filaments inserted in the pens.
Think of it like using an icing bag with a very fine nozzle, except the icing is actually plastic and holds its shape when exposed to the air. Colored plastic strips are heated up in the 3D printing pen, and then cool down to make an object.
The size of the 3D pens are part of what makes them so attractive, you don’t need a ton of space somewhere for storage like a 3D printer, all you need is just a bit of space on the shelf. 3D printing pens foster creativity and are a lot of fun as objects that are drawn on paper have the ability to come alive into real life.
With the dozens of brands out there on the market, how do you find the best 3D pen suitable for your child? Some of the nozzles in a 3D pen can get quite hot, but there are a few pens that feature low temperatures or use special material. Below you will find the most popular brands and a few more professional 3D pens that are worth a mention.
Here is an updated list of the best 3D pens for kids in 2017.
This article was originally published in 2016 and was last updated September 2017.
Teaching kids about design, building and spatial understanding is part and parcel of the 3Doodler Start pen. This multi-award winning wireless 3D pen for kids is safe, with no hot parts, and non-toxic BPA free refills. Kids can use their hands to mould the plastic when it comes out of the pen, and it comes with a project book to give you ideas about creating stencils and objects. The pen is also available in discounted bundles for classrooms and learning spaces. For more inspiration, the 3Doodler Project Book has 26 step by step projects to follow.
A perfect starter pen, Soyan’s 3D pen for kids is a lightweight, easy-to-hold entry that’s geared to help children improve their spatial thinking and tactile awareness. Soyan’s material comes at 3D printing from an educational standpoint, helping to empower kids to learn through creativity. Simplifying the prototyping process, kids breeze through the basics and get right to the job of lifting their dreams right off the page.
A big worry for parents is that 3D pens can be hot and burn little fingers. The Polyes Q1 pen uses cool photo-polymer resin that protects against any unwanted burns, and there are no hot parts or smelly odors. Funded by Kickstarter, Polyes Q1 is one of the most safest and child friendly 3D pens for kids. Available in three bright colors, packages of multi-colored inks to brighten up your creations can also be purchased.
From the same family as the 3Doodler Start is the 3Doodler Create. This 3D pen is geared towards teenagers and older hobbyists. It has a sleek lightweight aluminium body and higher temperatures allowing for more detailed creative work. With one of the best accessory ranges on the market including different nozzle sizes, portable power packs, pedals, stands, and over 75 colored plastics, this is one of the best 3D pens for kids around.
Thinking of using 3D pens in the classroom? The lightweight da Vinci 3D pen comes with an education package that includes instruction manuals, videos, and templates to share with your classroom. With 11 non-toxic and biodegradable filament colors to choose from, this 3D pen for kids can be easily popped in a backpack for making fun creations anywhere.
6. Polaroid PLAY 3D Pen
3D pens can be a way of encouraging children to think about engineering, and how objects are put together. The Polaroid PLAY 3D pen comes with a Trace App which helps kids stencil and construct parts of an object which can then be assembled into real life 3D model. This pen uses environmentally friendly plastic filaments which can get hot to the touch, so it is more suitable for older kids.
Creating unique art is easy with the Scribber 3D Pen. The ergonomically designed pen is comfortable to hold, and comes with stencils for towers, flowers, butterflies, and more. Also available is a ceramic nozzle which is safer to the commonly used copper nozzles, and an automatic shut off. The pen uses an OLED-display where you can control temperature and feed settings.
Kids can take control of their 3D pen projects with the Sketchpro 3D pen. A large LED screen lets them change temperature and feed settings on the fly, and a quick clean function helps with any unwanted clogs. This pen has a quick heat up time, and a lightweight design (50g) gets kids working on their 3D project without having sore or achy hands. A free ebook with over 100 stencils is included with each pen.
The award winning Creopop is a great option for a safe and hassle free 3D pen. Creopop’s 3D pens for kids have no hot parts or fussy wires making them perfect for little artists. Using photopolymers that go solid as kids use the pen, you don’t need to worry about melted plastic or unpleasant smells. The pens are fully wireless when being used, and there is a range of colourful, glittery, and glow in the dark inks to unleash kid’s creativity.
The IDO3D pen uses cool plastics to make sure hands stay safe, and ink can be cleaned with no fuss using baby wipes. Vertical creations can be made effortlessly with an LED light, and their website has courses to help kids master their 3D pen abilities and make innovative projects. The pen is soft and squeezable making it easy to hold for smaller hands.
The AtmosFlare 3D pen is particularly suitable for kids as it uses a LED light and ink to easily draw objects rather than hot plastic. With courses available on their website to help kids create their projects, both drawing in the air and making solid sheets of material are simple. Ink refills are available in 12 colors, and because it is battery powered, there are no annoying cables to get in your way.
Gearing up to take a stand as one of the most innovative companies on the3D printing pen market, the Mynt3D has replaceable nozzles, an LED display, speed control and temperature control. The slim design is perfect for professionals or more advanced users.
The LIX 3D printing pen is claimed to be the smallest circular pen in the world and comes with a professional look (black, grey) and two bags of coloured filaments. There are two different filaments available; ABS, with a high heat threshold and greater durability, and PLA, with a more aesthetically pleasing appearance.The pen has a short charging time to help artists right down to business on their latest project.
What if you’re not just an aspiring 3D modeller? What if your interests extend to woodcraft, polystyrene modelling or subtle metalwork? If so, then the 3D Simo Mini has it all for you. What does it bring to the table? Pure versatility! In addition to the expected 3D printing, the Simo Mini includes functions for wood burning, soldering and foam carving.
For those graduating to a more advanced level, 3Doodler offers their Pro 3D pen. With a built-in battery pack and adjustable settings, the pen can be adjusted for specialized projects requiring a particular level of craftsmanship. Advanced filaments include material made with metal (bronze, copper) and genuine wood fibre. In addition to modelling and prototyping, 3Doodler Pro can be used around the house for repairs and finishing.