Explore Empathy and Inclusion with the New Hour of Code: A Minecraft Tale of Two Villages

Begin or continue your computer science journey with this year’s new Hour of Code lesson: A Minecraft Tale of Two Villages! Students will be challenged to bring two villages together with the power of code, learning and practicing inclusion and empathy along the way. As they go through the activities, coders will experience compassion for their neighbors, learn about cooperation and equity, and embrace the diversity that makes us all uniquely special.

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Both the new Hour of Code activity and last year’s lesson are available for free in Minecraft: Education Edition. You can download and access these courses even if you don’t have an official license from your school.

For the first time ever, students can choose their own coding language for Hour of Code. Learners will be able to complete activities using block-based coding with MakeCode or text-based coding with Python for a challenge! The MakeCode activities can be done by learners as young as seven, and the Python path will engage more intermediate coders. Students will be encouraged to come up with their own creative solutions for each activity–with no one prescriptive way to solve any of the challenges.

Facilitate an Hour of Code with your classroom across hybrid, remote, and in-person learning environments, or play through an Hour of Code with your learners at home. In-game hints help facilitate the journey for self-directed learners, with easy options to reset code or take a break.

Students around the world will be learning to code as we celebrate Computer Science Education Week, December 7–13, but you can start preparing today by downloading Minecraft: Education Edition, familiarizing yourself with the lesson plan, or attending one of two play parties designed to help educators familiarize themselves with the lesson. Join us and fellow educators for these special community events on November 30 at either 9:00 AM or 4:00 PM PT. You can also watch this walk-through video of the tutorial below!

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Microsoft Education is hosting a free virtual Hack the Classroom event next week to help prepare educators, parents, and students for Computer Science Education Week. We’re excited to have a number of Minecraft segments in the broadcast, including walk-throughs of the Hour of Code tutorials directed towards younger and older age groups.

For those looking to learn in languages other than English, we’ll be releasing versions of the lesson in twelve additional languages in the next few weeks.

If you’re hoping to continue engaging with Computer Science and equity after the Hour of Code, we have over 150 hours of Computer Science lessons—the majority of which are new this fall—and a new Equity and Inclusion category of lessons in the in-game library. Educators planning Computer Science curriculum can also work through our brand-new, free Coding Academy Learning Path on the Microsoft Educator Center.

We believe that everyone can learn to harness the power of code. Begin your journey with us today!