MINECRAFT AT BRIGHT HORIZONS? IMPOSSIBLE! WELL, NOT REALLY...
Can you believe it that we have a huuuuuuge project going on at Bright Horizons and it's all about MINECRAFT?!?! Yes, we do.
Our own computing teacher, Ms Barton, has been collaborating with a team of experts from around the world and our pupils on using digital games for education. It all has to do with something called gamification and game-based learning. According to Ms Barton, Minecraft lessons can engage and motivate pupils and enhance teaching and learning in History, Maths, Science, Arts, Social Studies and, of course, Computing. The project also goes through the ideas and principles of Artificial Intelligence and how these principles are utilised through Minecraft challenges - machine learning, natural language processing, computer vision, robotics, data science, etc. This entire process has a positive effect on our natural interaction, perception and social skills.
Fun, friends and learning put together? What could be better than that!
Just take a look at the partners our school has teamed up with for this amazing process!
Here is what Ms Barton shared with us...
1. Dear Ms Barton, what do Minecraft and education have to do with each other?
There is more than you'd expect. It involves game play and coding; building mining, creating everything from in frozen worlds, to simple houses or castles in Minecraft.
2. How did you include our pupils in the Erasmus project?
Pupils have been invited to form a "Minecraft student leaders" group. We then met regularly to look at an example game covering the principles of AI. The group has already created characters, worlds and dialogue for a brand new set of challenges to be played in Minecraft.
3. What are the skills the children develop in this process?
Creativity, independence, risk taking, thinking skills, computational thinking, problem solving, being able to find solutions by breaking big tasks down into smaller more manageable chunks. These skills are transferable to all areas of study.
4. How will we know if our project succeeded?
The goal is to get 400 subscribers to the new world in Minecraft education, including at least 40 people in attendance at a promotional event. We would love to have pupils engaging in game-based play including building, creating and coding and gaining from these experiences.
5. What is the plan for next year?
A new world will be developed in Minecraft education, lesson plans, a handbook for teachers, promotional events.
A new world? Count us in! This is just a sneak peek into a tiny detail of the beginning of our project:
We are thankful to Ms Barton for sharing some insights into the project. This is all we could share for now, but follow our posts for more information! It's a two-year project, so can you just imagine what we will have accomplished by the end! We can't wait to see it all in action!
UPDATE: As you can see from the photos below, Ms Barton and Ms Končurat had a very important meeting about this in Athens with all the partners, and it is only one in a series of meetings to speed things up! This is so exciting! We love being leaders in inventive new projects!