Can Minecraft be Educational?

Jake Weaver

If teachers see Minecraft, they tell the students to turn it off, saying it’s just a game and cannot help in learning. Some schools even ban the game.

But, there is an educational aspect to Minecraft, and it is actually very helpful. Instead of banning it immediately, there are some things teachers could use Minecraft for.

They could use it to explore real life buildings, as there are a number of ways to import life size models of the buildings into the game. This could be used for architecture to learn about the building’s design or geography to explore it for a research paper.

Again, for architecture and also for engineering, students can build models in scale, for example a 1:2 scale of the Empire State Building, or a 1:4 scale of the Pyramids. There are endless things students can build, to scale, smaller, or even bigger.

For reading and writing classes, students could read a section from a novel, then recreate in in Minecraft, such as a building exploding, Katniss Everdeen sneaking through the forest, or even an evil villain entering a chamber. This helps practice reading something and then creating visualization.

Some teachers argue, saying that students would just mess around and do nothing. Well, if the teacher was in the game also, monitoring, or maybe using a program that lets him/her see everyone’s screens, then any messing around could be stopped.

Minecraft should be allowed at school, but for an educational purpose, so students can learn and have fun at the same time, which is much more fun than reading out of a textbook.