Minecraft- a learning tool?

So this is a random post from someone who typically writes about faith, family or fitness, right?  Well, in a way this is a family related post.

Every summer, I put together learning assignments for my boys to prevent the dreaded summer brain drain.  It isn't always easy- especially when we go away or when it is a Vacation Bible School week.  There are some days when I let them slide.  This year, however, big boy is in that irritating tween phase where they like to try to push and test boundaries.  So, I'm being firm and consistent.

Anyway, today was his first writing assignment.  The assignment was to write a persuasive essay about a topic that he feels passionate about.  Like most 12-year-olds, Minecraft happens to be on the top of his list.  I wanted to share the essay he wrote about Minecraft. I edited his commas and apostrophes but I kept the substance and content alone.  Keep in mind that this is a 12-year-old's essay...

     In my opinion, I think Minecraft is a good learning tool and you should agree.  It was developed by a Swedish game developer named Markus Persson or "Notch."  Its release date was May 17, 2009 and it turned into a multimillion dollar video game.  To some people it's a video game, but to others as well as myself, it is a great learning tool.
     So you're probably thinking, "Minecraft, a learning tool? No way!"  or "It is a video game."  But have you really explored the world and Minecraft or Minecraft itself? Schools worldwide use Minecraft for math and maybe science.  Sure it has the hostile mobs that you kill but it shows the strength of your sword.  I learned that diamonds are the strongest gems and maybe even the strongest substance in the world, just from killing zombies, creepers, and skeletons.  It also teaches you a lot more about rocks and minerals.  It shows how certain items are harder to get than others.  For example: emerald is really rare.
     Minecraft can be used in the math department too.  From simple geometry to area and parameter.  How? If you are building a house but don't know how to make it as big as you want it to be, you can use the area formula.  If you want your floor to be a full 25 blocks total. EASY! 5 by 5! It can be used in art also.  Want a cool statue? Just use pixel art.  If you want to dye your leather armor, pick certain colors to mix up the dyes.
     As you can see, Minecraft is not just a video game but a learning tool hiding in plain sight.  It can also stretch your creativity and imagination.  Figure out a way to make a working car without downloading a mod. Make a house with working appliances.  In other words... MINECRAFT IS GREAT!! :)

It's not too late to get your child(ren) into some summer learning.  I'll be posting some resources and ideas on Monday.

No comments