News

Students use coding to build their own Minecraft worlds

By Jon Kelvey, Carroll County Times, Westminster, Md.
March 11th, 2015

Programming languages like Python are being paired with Minecraft at one school

minecraft-worldsIt took twins Molly and Owen Pruitt only a few minutes to learn how to manifest a massive cube of hot obsidian suspended 100 feet in the air above a verdant valley. Then they added fruit.

“We created a piece of glowing obsidian next to a melon,” he said. “We call it a glowing melon.”

The Pruitt twins’ whimsical, but impressive, creative powers were on display in the world of Minecraft, an online computer game where players create the world in which they will have adventures by building structures and landscapes out of 3D blocks of various materials, including, but certainly not limited to, obsidian and melon.

In the real world, they were two of about a dozen teens who had gathered in the computer lab at the Eldersburg branch of the Carroll County Public Library on Monday for Minecraft Pi, the first of two events celebrating Teen Tech Week, according to Library Association Jen Bishop.

“The Young Adult Library Services Association actually host Teen Tech week. It starts March 9 and goes the entire week,” she said. “Their theme this year is ‘Libraries are for making.'”

On Wednesday, teens attending the Sonic Pi event will use the Ruby programming language to create music, Bishop said, but the Pruitts and others at Monday’s event were using the Python programming language to modify and build Minecraft worlds. That’s what excited Owen.

(image: http://blitzheart.deviantart.com/art/Minecraft-Ranch-345737414)

Next page: Using Raspberry Pi for playing and learning