Smith System Studio: 3d Printable Barrier Screen Stands

Smith System Studio creates free 3D printable design to create barrier screens for schools.


The re-opening of schools in the wake of a global pandemic will force a new normal that’s anything but for students, teachers and parents. How can we help kids, in particular, prepare? Smith System Assignment: Use our free design file and your school’s 3D printer to make low-cost barrier screens for you and your classmates.

The 3d printed feet come in two different versions to accommodate multiple sizes of screens and materials.

The goal of the “assignment” was threefold. First, to create a safer physical environment, given that most classrooms aren’t big enough for six-feet of social distancing. Second, to address the deep social-emotional wallop the virus has had on many kids. Third, to make the solution rapidly deployable using existing local resources. The project encourages them to take a hands-on role in getting back to their routine – and BFFs.

As a leading K-12 education furniture manufacturer, we quickly assembled “Smith System Studio,” a team of our top engineers to brainstorm ideas. We wanted something that addressed the classroom at smaller and full-size capacity.

This got the team thinking about a screen between desks. Which then led to, “How do people create these screens at home? Or is this something that students/teachers can create in their makerspaces at their own school or a community library?” The Smith System Studio’s collective “ah-hah!” was to design a screen-holder stand that anyone could print using makerspace capability (a 3D printer).

Beginning today, anyone can download our free design file to create a basic 3D plastic stand for making classroom screens. After printing the stand, students simply slide any type of firm material into the slots, like plywood, cardboard from collapsed boxes or foam board, to create an upright barrier. Even the smallest of 3D printers can handle the job. (Note: Parts are under 6” long).


IMPORTANT: Per the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “All decisions about following school reopening recommendations should be made in collaboration with local health officials and other state and local authorities who can help assess the current level of mitigation needed, based on levels of COVID-19 community transmission and the capacities of the local public health and healthcare systems, among other relevant factors.” Please see the most current version of U.S. CDC interim guidelines on how schools should handle safely reopening amid the coronavirus pandemic.