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3Doodler Start Learn From Home Pen Set Review by Amy Butler


Not that long ago, 3D printing was just something they talked about in movies. Now, 3D printing is so common that you just might have a printer in your own home! 3Doodler has combined this modern technology with creative doodling play to produce the 3Doodler Start Learn from Home Pen Set. This invention has taken this idea of plastic printing one step further into an educational tool that can fuel children’s vision and understanding to a higher level.

What we received within this 3Doodler Start Learn From Home Pen Set is the 3Doodler Start Essentials Pen Set, a 3Doodler Start DoodlePad, two packages of one hundred extra strands of multi-colored filaments and the What Will You Create Project Book.  The Learn from Home Set is regularly priced at $94.99, but at this writing is on sale for $49.99. The essentials pen set comes with a pen, micro-USB connector, two packages of twenty-four filaments, and an instruction manual for the pen. The 3Doodler rechargeable pen uses a single strand of BPA Free plastic (filament) that is inserted on one end and comes out a malleable version on the other end that the user then draws (creates) with. The material dries quickly allowing the user to create 3D designs. The DoodlePad is a thick clear plastic sheet that is covered with a grid, a circle guide, and an angle guide. This gives the user a clean space to work and be precise when necessary. The project book introduces several techniques, finished products, and step-by-step projects where designs in the book can be traced overusing the DoodlePad. On the website, there are several digital and printable resources including a Lesson Plan Library, a Stencil Library, and a Blog Library. This set is recommended for kids ages 6-13. All these readily available resources make this product usable in a homeschool or classroom-type setting with various unit studies and projects for students to work on. It can also be considered a tool that facilitates problem-solving as well. If you need something of a certain shape or size, this product could try to make it!

Since my husband has worked with 3D printers, my 7 and 9-year-old children had a great resource in him as they learned how this tool worked. At first, we used filament from the packages of twenty-four and had a great deal of difficulty. The filament was stiff, broke very easily, and seemed to clog the pen, making the creation of anything almost impossible. The inability to take off the cap or clean out clogged filament in some way was disappointing. We contacted 3Doodler and they offered advice and a replacement. Their customer service was excellent. The replacement worked a bit better, but we still struggled. Finally, someone opened a package of one hundred filaments and quickly discovered that they were vastly different than the other. These were bendy, not easily broken, and once entering the new pen worked far superior without any apparent clogging. Seeing a significant difference, my husband recalled how plastics for 3D printing can become damaged and ineffective when exposed to the elements, especially the sun. We guess the smaller packages may have been older and/or damaged in some way.

With the proper filament, this product requires some adult guidance at first to properly understand how it all works, but after that most children will be fine on their own. Once everything was working properly, my children loved playing around with this product creating works of art. This 3Doodler Set is an extremely fun product for your resident creator. This cross between a toy and a craft supply tool adds a completely new element to creative play. This process enhances students’ skills with a technology that will be an automatic element in most workplaces in the future.

-Product review by Amy Butler, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, August 2020