What does Minecraft look like as part of a home school environment?

I have had the pleasure of homeschooling my 2 boys from Kindergarten to Grade 8 and 9. Over the years we were given many opportunities by their Distributed Learning teachers to use different games to help them with their school work. The boys have also had a few amazing mentors (Bron...to mention one) who have introduced them to new ideas and challenged them even further in virtual worlds.

When the boys were first offered accounts on Minecraft I was not sure about the program. I had heard many people complain that their kids were addicted to it and I had a few teachers tell me that there is nothing kids can do to use Minecraft for school. I decided to let the boys try it and we would come to our own conclusions about Minecraft.

I am so glad that we tested it out. I found that as long as I limited the time they were on that it was manageable. I would sit and watch them build and try and understand why they liked it so much. I quickly learned that Minecraft had great potential for building scenes from history or even showing how things work in science. A whole new world opened up for the boys to display what they have learned.

Minecraft is a great platform for kids to show their creativity. Having to start from scratch to build something takes imagination. The boys have used Minecraft for several Science and Humanities projects this year. Their DL teacher is a huge fan of using games to show what you have learned and has given them many opportunities to build in Minecraft. Once they have built their project they have to do a walk-through to show that they know the information that goes along with what they built. The boys have learned so much more by building what they have learned from the textbook compared to reading the textbook and just answering questions.

Minecraft has been such an awesome learning tool for our family.

- home-school mom of 2 Minecraft miners