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Pilgrim Simulation

6-7 yrs old

8-10 yrs old

Geography

Government and Politics

History

Purpose - give students a closer look at the struggles of everyday life in the New World as they make decisions and face authentic consequences.

avatar Submitted By: Simon Vasey

Reworked From: Creating a Virtual Community

November 21, 2016

Skills

  • Citizenship
  • Collaboration
  • Critical Thinking

External References

Slideshow Introduction

A short slideshow that introduces the simulation to students.

Pilgrim Simulation Map

Start on the Mayflower to begin your adventure!

Supporting Files

Resource Worksheet


Sheet to log which supplies teams wish to bring

Pilgrim Simulation Map


Start on the Mayflower and begin your adventure!

Learning Objectives

  • Students will experience the difficulties of surviving in the new world as the found a colony
  • Student teams will collaborate to solve problems and achieve their goals

Guiding Ideas

During this simulation, students will experience:

  • An appreciation for the difficulties experienced by the Pilgrims.
  • Uncertainty as decisions are made and an unknown world is explored for the first time.
  • Satisfaction as their colony grows and prospers.

Guiding questions:

  • What makes this simulation challenging?
  • How does team work help your team meet its goals?

Useful sources and credits

  • "Mayflower 1620 - A New Look at a Pilgrim Voyage" by National Geographic"
  • The Library of the Pilgrims" book series by Susan Whitehurst
  • Mayflower ship design inspired by Madnes64 on YouTube
  • The hardworking teachers at Laura B. Sprague School in Lincolnshire, IL! #engage103

 

Student Activities

This lesson was designed primarily as an enrichment opportunity for a group of 2nd grade students who were learning about the origins of Thanksgiving in the United States. In class, the learned about why the Pilgrims left England, the perils of their ocean voyage, and the hardships faced as they began a new life in the New World. The students participated in a text-based simulation that endeavors to recreate the hardships, tough decisions, and uncertainty faced by the Pilgrims. While far more engaging than simply reading a book about the topic, many of the activities felt contrived. I've taken the spirit of their simulation and attempted to transfer it into the world of Minecraft Education.

To be most effective, your students will need to first develop an understanding of what the real Pilgrims went through. You could remove reference to the Pilgrims and New World and use this as a jumping-off point for your own nondescript frontier adventure if you don't have time to learn about the Pilgrims specifically.

The following activities will help guide this simulation - you should feel free to customize them to meet your own needs!

  • Packing for a New Life (optional) - before beginning the simulation, each group needs to purchase supplies (tools, food, materials etc.) to bring with them. They must work within a budget, and should understand that purchasing more items to bring with them will put them in greater debt at the end of the game. The will need to strike a balance and bring only the supplies they need. You will need to load the purchased supplies into the Mayflower before the students begin the simulation. Alternatively, you can skip this step and provide them with a set amount of supplies.
  • The team will begin the simulation by exploring the immediate area around the Mayflower's anchorage site. They should select a spot to begin growing their colony. If running in survival mode, they will need to gather food and resources. Team work will be essential!
  • Once the colony is established, you can introduce the Wampanoag village site, located by following the river north-east of the Mayflower spawn point (x505, y67, z530). The village has supplies that can be traded for. Feel free to adjust the wording on the poster. If you want to keep the village hidden at the start of the simulation, you should remove the Samoset NPC located on the beach near the Mayflower as he gives away the location of the village.
  • The goal is to create a colony that is able to provide a bountiful harvest at the end of the game. Each colony needs to collect as much food as possible - this can be grown, hunted, or traded. Each colony is also attempting to pay off any debt incurred from the purchase of resources at the start of the simulation. Debt is payed for by acquiring rabbit pelts or leather (fur) either from trading with the Wampanoag or by hunting. Load the furs onto the Mayflower at the end of the simulation.

Performance Expectations

Evidence of Learning :

  • Screenshots of their colony and food stores
  • Written or verbal reflection of learning:
    • What worked well when trying to build your colony?
    • What were the challenges in building your colony?
    • What do you wish you could change about your colony?
    • What are the advantages and disadvantages of working in a group?
    • Make a T Chart or Venn showing the differences and similarities between the struggles you faced during this Minecraft simulation and the challenges faced by the real Pilgrims.

Skills

  • Citizenship
  • Collaboration
  • Critical Thinking

External References

Slideshow Introduction

A short slideshow that introduces the simulation to students.

Pilgrim Simulation Map

Start on the Mayflower to begin your adventure!

Supporting Files

Resource Worksheet


Sheet to log which supplies teams wish to bring

Pilgrim Simulation Map


Start on the Mayflower and begin your adventure!

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