EDCI 336 Minecraft Reflection and Notes

Gaming in the Classroom

  • Presentation (Guest Speaker)
    • Minecraft
    • Microsoft was supposed to be piloted in the school by this spring but it has not yet. In the future, all students will have access to Minecraft and will be able to create Microsoft accounts
    • There are big differences between the EDU version that the speaker’s school has verses the Microsoft one (Microsoft is better and has more opportunities)
    • There are wide-open servers (red flag for parents and teachers) and private ones you can share with people you approve/allow access. A technique for parents to use if the students want to use the wide-open Minecraft groups is to not allow the child to play on it without the parent being there to supervise against negative players and content
    • How to get onto Minecraft (Speaker Slides)
      • Launch “Minecraft Launcher”
      • Select MinecraftEdu… click “Launch” in the next window
      • In the game window, type your name (must be at least 4 characters long)
      • Click continue
      • Click “multiplayer” button… then click the “Direct Connection” button
      • Enter the server address in the black box… then click join server button
      • Students must join as ‘I am a student” and click the “connect” button
    • My experience with Minecraft
      • I found that I do not know how to play Minecraft and found myself getting slightly sick based off of the constantly moving environment and the 3D simulation
      • I would like to get better at the game and understand it more knowing that it is very popular with children and can help to build community and work together
      • I was able to get help from the other people in my cohort as I have very little experience with video games (minus Mario Kart and Super Smash Bros) and needed guidance from those who had either found something that I needed already, had learned an ability earlier or had previous experience with the game. I enjoyed the group participation and the help that was given while we all played the game at the same time
      • In the free-world game, I was still confused but did like the challenge of the monsters and spiders that were able to challenge the game. The monsters helped to promote teamwork as the other players brought people into their Minecraft homes as shelter from the rain and monsters; others helped to slay the monsters that were trying to attack the players. 
      • When we were playing the free-world game you could easily hear the talk between the people in the class that was providing help to each other and giving reassurances. Players were on fire, yelled for help and other players yelled out solutions. I, myself, flew too high by accident and needed help to get down to the earth again. Once I was told the solution on how to get down after flying too high, I was then able to help the others.
    • Minecraft in the class
      • Builds community
      • Students help each other to complete individual and group objectives
      • Students learn more and more about the game and quickly gain skills off of experience
      • Choosing a leader for the class helps with leadership, group work and communication
      • Creative and critical thinking to solve problems
      • Minecraft uses the xy grid for coordinates which is something that is on the grade 7 curriculum. Minecraft exceeds the grade 7 curriculum as it uses the xyz grid and they use positive and negative coordinates
      • Explore coordinates in a 3D environment
      • Teachers can change the aspects of the games (who can write, what can make the students have to start over [death by skeleton, thirst, hunger, monster… etc.] and other variables that can change the way the children play the game)
      • Teachers can “gift” people things (ie. Something that will allow the students to create/begin a code that they discovered [cow resurrection centre]) 
      • Minecraft allows students to develop strategies
      • Children work on their own solutions; it’s not just on the teacher to reinforce all of the rules. Students think of what can happen if someone breaks the rules
      • Helps children learn about civilizations
      • Children build a world together
      • Class is a safe environment to play Minecraft and helps build community and promote collaborative learning
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