It's easy to start to use Minecraft in the classroom--here, a young student plays Minecraft on an iPad.

5 ways you can use Minecraft in the classroom

It's not as daunting as you might think to start using Minecraft in the classroom--here are some ideas to help you get started

By now, pretty much everyone knows what Minecraft is. If you’re just joining us, however, here’s a summary: Minecraft is a “sandbox” game offering open-ended possibilities for building and creation. Educators love it because it can be used across all subject areas, meaning Minecraft in the classroom is no longer a foreign concept.

All it takes is a Google or Pinterest search to find some pretty cool ways to incorporate Minecraft in the classroom.

You can search Twitter for hashtags such as #MinecraftEDU to see what other educators are doing, you can explore blogs or learning communities, or you can seek out likeminded educators at edtech conferences.

Whatever you do, don’t miss the chance to incorporate Minecraft in the classroom. English teachers can task their students with replicating villages or structures that play in integral role in a novel. History teachers can ask students to create historically-accurate representations of certain time periods. Foreign language teachers can ask students to rely on their vocabulary as they build and label objects within the game.

These are simple examples of Minecraft’s classroom potential, to be sure, but you get the idea.

5 examples of using Minecraft in the classroom

Here are some examples, straight from educators, of how using Minecraft in the classroom can boost engagement and student achievement.

1. Minecraft can inspire students who struggle with creative writing. As one educator observes, Minecraft helped students come up with more ideas for a classroom assignment asking them to write a story about a castle and then build that castle in the game. Students also were more engaged during the process.

2. Minecraft allows for a version of electricity, and users can create circuits, design logic, and create arrays, delays and repeaters. They can transpose computational thinking to build things that work, or build things and use their new vocabulary to explain in their Minecraft world what those things are and how they work. Many teachers are using Minecraft for electrical design and visual design.

3. Surprisingly, Minecraft can help students build SEL skills. Almost all teachers in a survey (97.7 percent) said problem solving is the top SEL skill their students learn from in-school and extracurricular Minecraft participation.

4. Computer science and coding skills are in high demand in today’s workforce, but qualified workers are hard to come by. Students can use their love of Minecraft to learn how to code and build strong programming skills.

5. Minecraft also can help with pre-algebra and geometry for early learners. Young students build things to specifications without using mathematical language, and when students are comfortable with the concepts after seeing them illustrated with Minecraft blocks, educators introduce math vocabulary and formulas or equations.

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