14-18 yrs old
Government and Politics
Topics covered include the causes of war, communication, strategy, and remembrance. What were some of the difficulties and dangers of trench warfare?
October 22, 2020
World War I Toybox world
Minecraft: Education Edition world file
Lesson Overview Video
Morse code decoding page
Transport and supply during the WW1
WWI Toybox Interactive Image
World War I Toybox Assessment
WWI Flight impact Notes PDF
WWI Flight impact Notes DOC
National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies Themes
C3 Framework Dimensions
The World War I world in Minecraft allows students to see, interact with, and explore some of the elements of the conflict while using out-of-game research, reading, writing, reflection, discussion, and art to enrich the whole learning experience. This lesson set ensures that students in high school courses have a basic understanding of the primary elements of World War I in a memorable and engaging methodology. Topics covered include the causes of war, communication, strategy, and remembrance. World War I toybox is structured and broken into five lessons over 4 weeks x 60 minutes per day.
Lesson 4 of 5
What were some of the difficulties and dangers of trench warfare?
Preparation and materials
Lesson 4 of 5
Students fly to the trenches (-92 61 -186) and encounter NPC Horace Pippin.
NPC Pippin says, "I spent my time serving in the African-American infantry during WWI. We spent more time in combat than any other military unit. Read more about our unit and how we fought."
Buttons on the NPC take students to the following sites:
Direct students to write a physical, paper letter from the perspective of a trench solider writing home to his family during World War I. It is important that this exercise is done on paper because that is authentic to what would have happened during this time period.
Create a class FlipGrid topic (or other virtual response tool) for this topic and post the guiding question. Students select a 30-second portion of their finished letters to read and share with the class.
Students travel to the next NPC Supply Solider next to the supply truck down the path after Horace Pippin and encounter NPC Supply Solider.
NPC Supply Solider says, "One of the primary tasks of a solider during WWI was to transport supplies from the depot to the front. We had to navigate the dangerous trenches to do so!"
Button on the NPC takes students to the following site: Read more
Students read the article. Consider having a class Socratic seminar or other formal discussion protocol on the horrors of the trenches and the reason so many soldiers died in this style of warfare. You may also choose to provide a prompt and assign a virtual, written, threaded discussion. This discussion is the assessment for this lesson.
As a class, brainstorm a list of supplies that the soldiers would have needed - or wanted - at the front. Help direct students so that the list includes the following items that are already included in the Minecraft world and are listed in the article provided:
Students enter the Minecraft world and find the supply truck (-94 61 -205). They remove the five items listed above from the supply truck and then navigate to the stairs on the right past the truck (-96 61 -183). Once students cross the pressure plate at the top of the stairs, the simulation begins! Students must travel through the trenches to the front supply station (-163 55 -157) by completing the maze through the trenches without dying. TNT (bombs) will drop from the sky and they must avoid them to make it to the finish.
If students die from the explosions, they will respawn at the start of the activity and may try again or continue to another part of the world.
Students could read actual letters written from the front during WWI as primary sources to their learning.
4 - Student participates in this class discussion in a way that invites others to join in. Student uses affirming tone and language when responding to others.
3 - Student participates in the class discussion with details from the reading. Student uses respectful tone and language when responding to others.
2 - Student participates in the class discussion but does not give details from the reading. Student uses neutral tone and language when responding to others.
1 - Student does not participate in the discussion or uses tone or language that opposes a positive classroom culture.
Sign up for the Minecraft: Education Edition newsletter. We promise to respect your inbox.