Minecraft in educatie
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Minecraft can be an educational tool that facilitates cooperation and teamwork among players.
While the mobs (enemies) may be scary or overly frustrating for younger children, single-player contains no coarse language, no sexual or drug references (the occasional vandalism of a language pack does happen, however the US English pack is controlled by Mojang and the vandalism mainly occurs to development versions of the game), no blood and dead mobs simply turn red, fall over, and then disappear in a puff of smoke. There is combat, but it is in the context of survival, not gratuitous killing and is not graphic. There is also a peaceful mode, so younger players do not have to encounter enemies apart from wolves (which only attack if provoked).
In multiplayer, other people on the server may use coarse or inappropriate language when using the in-game text chat. This can be prevented by running a private server, where access can be restricted to specific players using the customizable whitelist. You can also turn off chat by going to settings menu and from there to Multiplayer Settings. There you have a option to turn off your chat, you will see no member talk, and you cannot talk. You are also prevented from using commands like /home, which can be extremely useful.
Minecraft can have a huge educational benefit for children; it can help teach numerous subjects both with and without adult involvement. Learning in Minecraft can be faster than traditional methods of education, as children are often far more motivated, get more practice, and feel that what they are learning is useful.
|Reading||The names of items in the inventory are a great place to start teaching children to read, since each item has a tooltip and image which go together. For older children, reading the wiki and online guides can extend their skills.|
|Writing||Players can use the Book and Quill within the game to keep a log, or to communicate information to other players. By contributing to the wiki, older children learn to write informational texts in a collaborative, multimedia environment.|
|Math||The crafting system can help in teaching basic math (e.g. I need 3 Sugar Cane for Paper), which transitions to multiplication (I need 3 Paper and 1 Leather for a Book, and 3 Books for a Bookshelf, so I need 9 Paper and 3 Leather all together) and division (When I create Paper I get 3 at once, so 9/3 = 3 times per Bookshelf I'll have to create Paper).|
|Geometry||While the Minecraft world is only made up of cubes, the creations a child makes may resemble other shapes. Parental involvement can help teach children to recognize these shapes (cube, cuboid, square based pyramid, etc.). Also, counting the number of blocks that were dug out when making a 6x6x3 cave can help multiplication skills and understanding the concepts of volume and area.|
|Music||With the preparation of some Redstone circuitry, experimenting with Note Blocks can teach children about notes, octaves and chords.|
|Social skills||By setting up a private server, parents can provide a safe environment for children to interact with friends and make playing Minecraft a cooperative event. Using a Local Area Network (LAN, or "home network") will allow children to play in the same room with their friends. By using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP, or "voice chat"), a phone call, or the in-game text chat, they can play together wherever they are. Either method allows children to work together to build, explore, and learn as they develop their social skills, especially teamwork. For older children, contributing to the Minecraft Wiki can be a chance to learn about Internet etiquette and collaboration.|
|Basic Computer Science||Redstone circuitry provides an interactive environment to build basic logic circuits and combine them for more
sophisticated purposes. Feedback is immediate, and the mistakes don't destroy expensive electrical components.
Minecraft can be easily set up by a parent for their child to play. After purchase, they need only download the game from minecraft.net, open the file, and log in. The file can be saved to the desktop for easy access, or to any location on the computer. If the parent allows the game to save their username and password, the child will only have to run the file and click "Login". Alternately, they may choose to restrict the child's access by keeping the password secret.
Setting up a server is much more involved, and will likely require parental assistance through the age of 13.
- 5 Ways Minecraft Can Help You Improve Your SAT Score, StudentAdvisor.com (A Washington Post Co)
- Ideas for Using Minecraft in the Classroom by Andrew Miller, Edutopia.com