Reply To: Online Module 2: Minecraft and the Curriculum

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Bernadette MCarthy

Part one: (100 words) Discuss what the criteria are for an effective lesson in Minecraft education
• Prior knowledge of topic
• Clear instructions and rules
• Familiarity with using ICT to assist lessons
• Time tabling
• Consideration of groupings and set roles for students
• Fun and enjoyment
• Space

Part two (100- 150 words): Discuss your schools current level of ICT. Make reference to teacher use, student use, hardware, digital content and school emphasis on integrating ICTs into teaching and learning. Is your school equipped for Minecraft education and how might you introduce it.

The school where I work is very well resourced with ICT. There has been a concentrated effort to constantly upskill staff with new ICT initiatives and projects over the years. As well as departmental funding, Equipment has been sponsored and funded by private companies. Unfortunately departmental funding has often fallen short of what is needed for schools to be well resourced in this area and to allow for new and innovative ways to for teaching and learning. The school has several very experienced teachers who have an excellent level of ICT skills. The ICT coordinating teacher leads a digital learning team within the school and is readily available to support and encourage staff . Regarding hardware, the school has a laptop cart with 20 laptops, 12 ipads and 12 surfaces. We also have a computer room with 12 computers. Each classroom has an Interactive whiteboard, recently a process has begun to upgrade these boards to smart boards. For use of ICT equipment, timetables are devised to allow all staff and children access.

Minecraft Education has been used very effectively by a number of teachers in the school. Having observed some of the lessons, what was very noticeable was the lack of discipline problems and that each pupil was engaged, regardless of ability. The children were all working collaboratively and above all having fun. If I could deliver lessons like the ones I’ve observed using Minecraft, I’d be very proud.