If a teacher says that word the students turn their heads, become silent, and are laser-focused on that educator. If you think we are kidding, we aren’t! This game has been sweeping across the nation for the past few years.
Minecraft is one of the most popular games for use on either a computer or gaming device. It’s basis is the fundamental square shape building block that the main character, Steve, has control over in this virtual world. From building shelter, to growing crops, to even building portals to the Nether, this game awes its creator with infinite possibilities.
So from watching our own children play this game, we can already conclude that it involves math: logic and spatial reasoning. But one interesting thing also happened as our children played, it involved reading as well.
In a recent article published by Wired.com, Minecraft is helping the current generation of gamers increase their reading skills! Minecraft has released books that are called “handbooks.” Some topics are: redstone, combat, the essentials and more. Children are seeking out literature to read in order to experience the game at a whole new level.
In our classrooms, just the mention of Minecraft gets the students to perk up. In a recent Scholastic News article, there was a feature article on Minecraft and the game’s use in the classroom. We used this resource as a great article to discuss the structure of informational text. We were also to use common core based questions to have the students dig deeper into the text. Talk about a highly engaging activity!
As student engage in various literacy activities centered around Minecraft, there is no doubt that increased fluency and comprehension will occur. As long as the game stays popular with kids, it will also be a popular way for teachers and parents to promote the enrichment of reading skills too.
Who would’ve thought that two teachers would be writing a blog post in support of a video game? Well, our kids are proof! The popularity of a video game should be used in schools as a motivator to help students reading abilities too!