Minecraft’s virtual worlds can teach real history

(Last Updated On: June 4, 2014)


Minecraft explorers worldwide excavate sand to smelt into glass, diamonds to hone into swords and redstone to power millions of digital creations.

Amber Palmer’s fifth-graders visit the Minecraft universe to dig into history.

At the beginning of the school year, the Bennion Elementary students learned about explorers and land charters, which they had to request from Queen Palmer to begin their virtual building on iPads. (Later, the queen’s stiff taxes provoked a revolt.)

Students formed their own states, debated whether to have slaves, moved westward, endured insect infestations, fires and other natural disasters, and built factories at the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.

By the time they were creating Minecraft houses with cubes representing gold and diamonds, as they studied the “roaring” 1920s, they knew the decadence could not last.

“They have had enough experience,” Palmer says, “to know that there are ups and downs throughout history.”

Source: The Salt Lake Tribune

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