Integrating video games as a tool for learning is no longer a new thing. Although it didn’t receive much attention at first because of the notion that students will be easily distracted, many educators are now taking advantage of it in the classroom. Normally, playing games is engaging and most are highly interactive when played in teams. It has been discovered that games have benefits that include boosting creativity, cognitive and motor skills. There are many students who search for what is a good paper writing service. You can be rest assured that your papers are plagiarism-free and of top quality. Minecraft was officially launched in 2011 by Microsoft Inc. It is a video game that can be played on computers or tablets. Players can decide to play it alone or with friends. The Education edition of Minecraft was released earlier this year and it is designed basically for schools. This free version is similar to Mine craft Edu but new features are added. Playing the game involves placing and mining 3D building blocks made of different materials like ores, dirt, stone, tree trunks and water.
Let’s check out how tutors and students can use Minecraft as an educational tool.
• As a writing tool
Minecraft is a game that is not based on stories, so students must use their imagination. Teachers can encourage students to use it for designing and writing stories based on their character in the game. This approach makes it easier for them to write their experiences and challenges in their own words. As they write, the locations, plots and settings are added to the story. Minecraft hones creative writing skills in students. After completing and polishing the stories, they can be published on blogs or social media pages for other students to have access to it and collaborate.
• For improving reading skills
Possessing strong reading skills is important for all students. It will be needed during examinations, tests and assignments in order to clearly interpret questions and instructions. Furthermore, getting the best out of studying school materials require good reading skills. Minecraft is a game that improves reading skills in students of all ages. When playing the game, instructions must be read to keep playing and move to the next level. It contains many clues and game-specific words that needs to decoded. Due to its immersive nature, players rarely give up in Minecraft and they make sure that they complete levels. Students with learning disabilities like dyslexia can be assisted with developing their reading skills with the game.
• Handling complex subjects
Due to one reason or the other, some students often find certain subjects complex. This does not imply that they are lazy and not ready to learn in most cases. Minecraft can be used to introduce these subjects in a way that is interesting and simple. A good example is its application in Mathematics for improving technical drawing skills as students get familiar with depth, perspective and isometric view. The gaming process itself is fun and students will understand quickly before they realize that they are actually playing games and studying at the same time. Complex concepts in science or other subjects can also be simplified with Minecraft.
• To develop problem solving skills
Players often start from the scratch and design all their essential needs like food, security and shelter. Due to the fact that there is no story line to follow, all the game processes require proper decision making. Although there are various tutorials online, players will still have to figure out some things on their own if they want to progress. The challenges faced in Minecraft by the characters are just like the ones in real life that can assist students to adapt quickly and think logically.
In order to optimize Minecraft in the classroom, it is essential to evaluate the students’ needs first. Once this is done, it will be easier to personalize it to suit their capabilities. Generally, games should be used in moderation so that it won’t have adverse effects on students. Minecraft gives room for freedom and it has lots of potentials that can only be discovered when students and tutors infuse their creativity without any restrictions.