This post is adapted from a presentation given by Educational Technology team leaders Kacie O’Maley and Amber Palmer and school technology specialists Ashley Moore, Keith Reidford, and Melissa White.
Educators and students in Granite School District have access to Minecraft: Education Edition for classroom use, and it can now be used on Chromebooks! Read on to find out how to access Minecraft: Education Edition, as well as why and how to share it with your students.
What Is Minecraft Education Edition?
Minecraft is a sandbox game or open world game, which means it is an exploration-based environment in which players can discover and create.
Minecraft: Education Edition is a game-based learning platform that promotes creativity, collaboration, and problem-solving in the immersive digital environment of Minecraft.
Why Is Minecraft a Powerful Tool for Learning?
Here are few examples of how Minecraft can be used as a learning tool:
- Teachers can leverage students’ natural love of Minecraft to engage students in learning
- Teachers can connect curriculum with the Minecraft platform; teachers can demonstrate concepts and students can create artifacts to show their learning, all within Minecraft
- Standards + Inquiry + Creativity = Engaged 21st Century Learners
- Minecraft provides a platform for students to practice the The 4 Cs (Critical Thinking, Communication, Collaboration, and Creativity)
- Minecraft provides a platform for teaching coding concepts and computational thinking
Why Teachers and Students Love Minecraft
Why do teachers and students love using Minecraft for learning? Here are few reasons:
- Students can be the experts
- Students are engaged
- Students are designing and creating
- Students are problem solving together
- It’s okay that there isn’t a “right” answer
- Students are developing 21st Century Skills
Accessing Minecraft Education Edition (Students and Teachers)
There are two main steps to accessing Minecraft: Education Edition:
- Download and install the app on your device. You can visit https://education.minecraft.net/get-started/download to find current download links for your platform (Windows, Chromebook, Mac, or iPad.)
- Log in to Minecraft with your @graniteschools.org account. Granite staff and students use their Microsoft Office 365 accounts to log in to Minecraft:
Staff: enter email@example.com and current password
Students: enter firstname.lastname@example.org and current password
Need more help getting Minecraft on your computer? Try these detailed instructions for installing and logging into Minecraft on Chromebooks in Granite School District. Minecraft can also be pushed out to student Chromebooks and teacher or lab machines upon request. Teachers should contact their school technology specialist or library media educational technology specialist if they are interested in an auto-installation for their students.
Presentation: Getting Started with Minecraft for Education
Presentation: Minecraft for Education – Getting Started
Library and school technology specialists recently engaged in an introductory professional development session in using Minecraft for Education. This training was led by Educational Technology Team Leads Kacie O’Maley and Amber Palmer, along with school technology specialists Ashley Moore, Keith Reidford, and Melissa White. This presentation, which the article above samples, can get any teacher started on learning about Minecraft and exploring how to use it with students. Besides what is shared in this article, the presentation includes information on creating, navigating and hosting worlds, building portfolios, and lesson plan and activity ideas.
Minecraft Challenge Scavenger Hunt
This is a series of quests and challenges to grow your skills in Minecraft, created by Lucas Gillispie (edurealms.com). In our department Minecraft training, participants went through these challenges in a shared world. This could be used in an introductory Minecraft professional development session, with students to introduce them to Minecraft for Education, or on your own to learn and explore the features of Minecraft.
Getting Ready for Minecraft (Student Presentation)
This presentation is designed to get students started on using Minecraft on Chromebooks in the classroom. Created by our own Keith Reidford, School Technology Specialist at Silver Hills Elementary.
Getting Started in Minecraft (Tutorial)
This Minecraft tutorial explains how to get started with screenshots and step-by-step instructions.
Pre-Made Minecraft Lessons at education.minecraft.net
This is a searchable database of lessons tied to virtually all content areas and grade levels. When you’ve found a lesson, download the Minecraft world file and import it into Minecraft to start playing or using the lesson. (Teachers can log into education.minecraft.net with their @graniteschools.org Microsoft accounts to save favorite lessons, earn badges, contribute, and more.)
Minecraft: Education Edition Teacher Academy
Curated by the Microsoft Education Center, this is a self-placed training for teachers that takes about 10 hours in total and includes game play, mini-trainings, best practices for integrating Minecraft in the classroom, and more. (Teachers can log in to the Microsoft Education Center with their @graniteschools.org Microsoft account.)
The Official Minecraft Wiki page is a publicly accessible and editable wiki for information on Minecraft and related subjects. This wiki and its 5,320 articles are managed and maintained by 1,021 active contributors from the Minecraft community. Anyone can contribute!
If you have questions about Minecraft or would like ideas and help in using it in the classroom, please contact your school technology specialist or library media educational technology specialist.
Share with us the ways you are using Minecraft in the classroom on social media by mentioning us (@graniteedtech on Twitter and Instagram) or using one of our hashtags: #GSDEdTech and #GSDLibraries.
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