My daughter, the small blonde, the 6 year old gamer Aquavera as you might heard me talking about have run into a challenge. Her teachers in pre-school have no idea, and what so ever, about a game called Minecraft...
Should I be surprised?
Well, probably not... :P
Here's the thing, last week when she had the flu I was working from home and I thought there might be a chance my students will be online on our project Minecraft server. If so, I can have the class from home. A bit too high expectations because my replacement can not understand the point of involving the game in teaching. But still, we were there and had to to something so we started to build her school...
And that was fun.
It triggered a lot of learning and questions and thoughts. For example, we had this map which we tried to follow as much as we could:
The following days we discussed a lot of what the school looked like in real and we both took lots of pictures. I was allowed to take some of them on the outside (she pointed what to take pictures of) but when it came to the inside she wanted to do all the photo documentation by herself.
When we started to analyzed and reflect over how it looked in real life she came up with following changes we have to do:
- Changing the roof
- Raising the walls with a block so we get the order of the windows
- The area around the playground must look right
And as you could see from above, it's so much learning going on and it's a truly goldmine to use in education. She doing lots of stuff I only could have dreamed about myself in her age.
The small blonde also talked with her teachers about this little project but they didn't understand a word. And please, if this 6 year old girl does all that stuff, and you have all those old fashion thoughts about boys and girls and videogames, wouldn't that at least give you some warning signals where the world is going?
OK, so next thing, also about Minecraft.
The small blonde, again, had done some information search and has been jibbering, babbling about set up a My Little Pony minecraft server since May. I've tried to explain it's too complicated and expensive, takes too much time and she's been telling me the opposite.
So yesterday, after one of my students had explained some and helped me with a tutorial, we could start get the MLP up on her game/computer. We had a delay of one day because I wasn't allowed to do this by myself: she wanted to be apart of it. She couldn't wait to test it and please have a look and a second thought about what she looks like, what she is doing.
- Focus: long and short distance.
- Control: WASD + mouse.
- Creative: have already a building plan.
- Problemsolving: flying because of the monsters but took the opportunity to skill up her aiming with bows instead of be afraid.
And later that evening, when she was asleep, my student also told me the mod is client based, I don't need a server, I just need a server that could work with the 1.6.4 version of Minecraft.
So, in the end, yes she was right.
It was simple, easy and took no time to fix.
This morning the small blonde summarized it with three little words:
"I told you."
If I'm old, stupid and think my way is the best I would end there.
But isn't there something for myself there to learn?
Yeps, sure is:
- Youth of today learn in a complete different way than we expect, think or believe.
- You (yourself) are never too old to learn.
- Have a little faith in our kids.
- Key competences for lifelong learning
- We have to seriously start to think how we teach the youth of today, becasue they are our future!
So fellow teachers and colleagues, please open your eyes!
Six year year old girl - and you better believe she's not alone - doing all those things because she thinks it's fun!
Take advantage of it!
Use it when you teach our kids!
You don't have to master the tech or the games, you only have to use it. And to do that you have to leave your comfort zone and dare!
And guess what?
It's worth the risk...