By: Mike Carmon
The universe of Minecraft can be a rabbit hole of sorts, but also one filled with endless worlds overflowing with endless possibilities. Over vacation week, WMSI used this diverse and exciting universe to bring STEM to vacationing students across New Hampshire’s north country with our two-day Minecraft Camp here in Bethlehem.
After brief introductions and getting-to-know-you’s, students sat down at their respective stations and collectively entered the world of Minecraft to complete several intriguing challenges.
Our world is one of limited resources, an important lesson that our STEM students learned in our first camp activity: building a house in Minecraft using only a strict set of allotted materials. Students were required to pool those resources in an effort to build the house as a team, each designing intricate rooms that all served different purposes.
The resulting house displayed a remarkable diversity as each student put their own respective mark on the room they designed, yet certainly conveyed the importance of working together to ensure resources are allocated where necessary, and that everyone’s individual designs work in tandem to form a cohesive unit.
We closed out Day One by forming two teams and using Makey Makey technology for each team to navigate a tricky Minecraft maze. With each member of the team in charge of navigating one specific direction within the maze, this made for some excellent team-building!
Day Two of camp opened with students facing off against the camp instructors, with students attempting to navigate a Minecraft obstacle course while our instructors placed lots of tricky barriers in their way. While the instructors certainly produced a tough challenge, the students proved equal to the task!
The final leg of Minecraft camp was the ultimate team challenge, with students putting on their Search-And-Rescue hats and seeking out a virtual lost hiker in a simulated MInecraft version of the White Mountains. With concepts such as conserving limited resources, navigation, surviving a remote environment, and dependence on teammates, this big ultimate task also proved successful. It was truly a wonderful sight to watch all of the students work together to find the virtual lost hiker!
All in all, our Minecraft Camp was a huge success, and we’re looking forward to our diverse set of camps coming up this summer!