Joel Levin on Every Classroom Matters

3 Ways Monsters and Minecraft Can Drive Great Teaching and Learning

Joel Levin on Every Classroom Matters

In this episode, Minecraft EDU creator Joel Levin talks with Vicki about Minecraft in schools. Want your school to use Minecraft? This is THE episode to share! Get those kids excited about learning! You can use Minecraft!

Important Takeaways for Listeners

  • Minecraft makes great student-centered student-led projects. Joel gives examples.
  • How do you talk to kids about Minecraft in the classroom?
  • What are the differences in Minecraft EDU in the classroom and the traditional Minecraft?
  • How you can lead even when students know more about Minecraft than you do.
  • Joel rants a bit.
  • How machinima is changing.
  • How to turn students from consumers into creators.

If you listen to one show on Minecraft, this is it. Scroll down for 2 quotes for you listeners out there who love to pin them! ;-) 

Educator Resources

  • Minecraft Educator Summit – The first Minecraft educator summit was held in early 2015. Joel gives us the skinny on what happened.
  • Minecraft EDU – Joel shares: ways teachers configure Minecraft, resources, and one group every Minecraft teacher should join.
  • Minecraft Educator Portal -Microsoft bought Minecraft and unveiled this teacher portal.
  • Minecraft Builder Bowl – Joel mentions the emergence of live gaming events. Here's a Minecraft competition happening summer 2015.

Interview Links

[tweetthis]Results come from fostering a great relationship with your students @MinecraftTeachr[/tweetthis]

What Teachers Say

The conversation exploded about this show on the ECM Awesome Educators Network on Facebook. Some highlights. Listener Joli Barker Erwin says,

“I use minecraft edu as an assessment tool and a project tool. I've used it for measurement, as a virtual lab, as a digital diorama for books, as environmental science exploration…sooo much. Students even created games for a global empathy project.” See

Listener Michelle Baldwin says,

“My kids ask to use it to demonstrate something they're curious about. One year, we were talking about how people organize themselves into different types of governments. One group wanted to learn about oligarchies and said they could share what they were learning by building a capital city in Minecraft. They could articulate a LOT about what they had learned as they shared their city (these were grade 3-5 kids):…/our-capital…/

Teachers shared Zoe Branigan-Pipe‘s blog post “Proud to Be a Minecraft Teacher.” Minecraft transformed Zoe's classroom. Some people labeled her, though. (I wonder if people do that to excuse themselves from giving it a whirl?)

You can subscribe to the podcast on iTunes or elsewhere, get the RSS feed, or listen via the media player above.

Want to talk about Minecraft

If you want to talk about the show, join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.


[button href=”” primary=”false” centered=”true” newwindow=”true”]You're invited! Join the Every Classroom Matters Awesome Educators Network on Facebook.[/button]

Results come from teachers building relationships with their students. Joel Levin

Classrooms are not just made of bricks, they are made of clicks. Vicki Davis

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Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

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Christian Dabney July 15, 2015 - 7:10 pm

I think this is very interesting. I would of never thought about using this in my classroom to help my students learn.

Vicki Davis July 22, 2015 - 8:47 am

Minecraft is such a great tool to use!


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The Cool Cat Teacher Blog
Vicki Davis writes The Cool Cat Teacher Blog for classroom teachers everywhere