I went back and forth about what to do for this project, as my aspirations for originality warred with my need to check off a goal for my school’s use of technology. In the end, I knew that learning and implementing MinecraftEdu was what my school needed and therefore made my choice obvious.
Even though I won’t get an originality prize, I am excited to offer this club to kids (and teachers) at school. I have been offering coding as an After School Activity (ASA) for a few sessions now, but they kids are always begging for Minecraft. Similarly, at home, my two kids do their best communicating and collaborating when they are building in a world together.
After my friend @jodeejunge and I learn how to use this as a teaching and learning tool, we are also going to offer a workshop to other teachers across the school and invite them to come see how the kids are using the tool and let the kids teach them how to move around, dig, and build. ASA is an ideal starting point because there will be more teachers available to come and learn implementation of the tool and the pressure of not wasting a classroom minute is far less.
Another bonus to starting in ASA is that we can get a school set of servers and accounts with the activity fee; we all know how difficult it is to get approved for purchases in the middle of the year! After reading several COETAIL Course 5 project reflections about Minecraft, I found Alex Guenther’s post that talked about how he created numbered accounts for his grade 7 students. From there we found a helpful tutorial that showed us how to number the accounts and attach them all to one email address.
With so many fantastic resources from educators who have been right where Jodee and I are now, I feel confident that we can make this a powerful learning experience for ourselves, our students, and other teachers at our school.