Science in Minecraft

11-13 yrs old

14-18 yrs old




Be able to identify differences between the way chemistry, biology and physics behaves in the real world compared to how it behaves in Minecraft.

avatar Submitted By: Minecraft Education

January 22, 2018

Learning Objectives

  • Be able to identify difference between the way chemistry, biology and physics behaves in the real world compared to how it behaves in Minecraft.
  • Be able to describe the real world science that is partially represented in Minecraft.

Guiding Ideas

Lesson 10

This is a synoptic lesson which should draw on the experiences that students have had in the other chemistry lessons. However, it follows particularly well from the lesson titled 'The Scientific Method'.

It is not possible for Minecraft to accurately mirror the full complexity of the real world so many things have to be  simplified.

Some examples of discrepancies and discussion points include:

• In the real world TNT can explode underwater. What was the game designers’ rational for adding sodium to Minecraft TNT to make it explode underwater?

• The Minecraft sodium acetate ice bomb turns water into ice. How does this differ from real word sodium acetate 'ice'?

• In Minecraft magnesium salts are created by combining NaCl and magnesium.  What would happen if you reacted magnesium and NaCl in the real world?

• Iron ore when placed in the material reducer produces iron.   What other elements would you expect to find in iron ore?

• What real world chemical reactions would you like to see in Minecraft?

Student Activities

Students may use the Minecraft based experiments they devised in the earlier lesson 'The Scientific Method' and then design equivalents for real world situations. If practical students could be allowed to perform the real experiments.

Students should research the real world equivalents to Minecraft science and begin to explain the differences between them. They may also like to think about why the game designers have used particular game mechanic to approximate a real world situation, as in the TNT example given above.

Performance Expectations

Students should be able to formulate a theory and experiment to test it. They must keep a laboratory book which details their experiment, observations, theories and conclusions. They should then present their work to the class.


  • Collaboration
  • Creativity
  • Project Based Learning