Educators have been taking advantage of using Minecraft in the classroom for years now, teaching students everything from STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) to arts and poetry. This week, Microsoft announced the new Minecraft: Education Edition, a tool for teachers to better incorporate the popular game in their lessons. Read on to learn what to expect when this new product launches this summer.

What’s New?

  • Enhanced maps with coordinates for students and teachers to find their way around the Minecraft world together.
  • Student Portfolio feature, where students can take photos and selfies to show their work and what they’ve learned.
  • Enhanced multiplayer, where a classroom of up to 40 students can work together toward a greater world in Minecraft.
  • Login and personalization, where students have personalized avatars and will feel more engaged in the game, and teachers will know who each player is.
  • World import and export, where teachers and students can create and save their worlds in the game.

Adding tools for teachers, customization for students, and a library of lesson plans to choose from will make Minecraft easier for students and teachers to manage and secure the games. Parents will even be able to track their child’s progress.

Can’t Wait for the Release?

You can check out some of the starter lessons now, which feature downloads like the Great Pyramids of Giza, where students can discuss the engineering and architectural structure of the ancient times, or Pixel Art, filled with lessons focused on visual arts and literacy.

Minecraft: Education Edition even provides parents and teachers with forums full of lesson ideas, meetups, and contacts. You can even connect with a Minecraft Mentor to help get you the support you need for your first lesson.

Parents and teachers can look forward to the new edition this summer as Microsoft hopes to sell Minecraft: Education Edition for $5 per student per year.

Are you and your student ready to try it out? Let us know in the comments below!

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