Minecraft game art illustration of a nighttime world.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Minecraft: Education Edition is a version of the popular open world game, Minecraft, specifically designed for education. It contains features that make Minecraft more accessible and effective in a classroom setting including:

• Classroom Mode is a companion app for Minecraft: Education Edition that shows a high-level map view of the world, a list of all the students, the ability for a teacher to teleport students, and a chat window to communicate. Classroom Mode is provided for Educators who may want to observe student activity without being in the game.o Classroom Mode is a companion app for Minecraft: Education Edition that shows a high-level map view of the world, a list of all the students, the ability for a teacher to teleport students, and a chat window to communicate. Classroom Mode is provided for Educators who may want to observe student activity without being in the game.

• Easy Classroom Collaboration: Educators have told us that one of the greatest benefits of Minecraft: Education Edition is the ability for students to collaborate together to build projects and solve problems. An entire classroom of up to 30 students can play in a world together with no separate server setup required. Or students can work together in pairs or groups simply by joining their classmates’ world.

• Non-Player Characters: An educator may create an NPC (Non-Player Character) to act as a guide for students in the game, giving instruction, providing more information, and also allowing educators to insert an active web link to additional references.

• Camera + Portfolio: An important aspect of teaching with Minecraft is being able to collect evidence of learning in the game, and being able to track student progression. The camera and portfolio features allows students to take screenshots of their work and document the development of their projects.

• Chalkboards: Creators can use chalkboards to communicate learning goals, provide additional information and give explicit instructions within the game. Chalkboards come in three different sizes – Slate (1×1), Poster (2×1), and Board (2×3).

• Simple, Secure sign-in: Individual student and teacher logins with Office 365 Education accounts ensure data privacy & security while playing Minecraft: Education Edition.

• Tutorial World: For educators or students new to Minecraft, a tutorial world is available that will guide players on in-game navigation, crafting, and placing or breaking blocks.

A range of new Minecraft lessons are available for educators to use across subjects and age levels. Each lesson includes learning objectives, activities, suggested reflection questions, and evidence of learning criteria. Some example lessons include “City Planning for Population Growth”, “Exploring factors and multiples”, and “Effects of deforestation”. To download lesson plans, or suggest new ones, please visit https://education.minecraft.net/class-resources/lessons/.

Much like the game Minecraft, Minecraft: Education Edition is designed to be a versatile and open platform, but in a way that can be used to teach all types of subjects, from math and physics to history and language arts. By utilizing the digital platform and classroom experience, students can also develop skills in collaboration, problem solving, communication, digital citizenship, and more. There is no limit to what students can learn in the game, and no limit to how the game can extend classroom learning.

What do I need to get started with Minecraft: Education Edition? To start using Minecraft: Education Edition early access,

• Upgrade your computer to Windows 10 or OS X El Capitan

Sign up for a free Office 365 Education account using your school or district email

• Download Minecraft: Education Edition and start playing!

When will Minecraft: Education Edition be available? An early access program for Minecraft: Education Edition will be available on June 9 for educators to download and try over the summer for free. Minecraft: Education Edition will be available for purchase later this fall. Interested educators can sign up to receive updates at http://education.minecraft.net.

We understand the demands on today’s educators and are committed to making Minecraft: Education Edition as affordable and accessible as possible. Minecraft: Education Edition costs $5 per user per year, and opportunities for volume licensing are also available by contacting your preferred reseller.

You can buy Minecraft: Education Edition by visiting https://education.minecraft.net/get-started/ and entering your work email address.

Additionally, School districts and municipalities with a Microsoft Enrollment for Education Solutions (EES) volume licensing agreement may add Minecraft: Education Edition to their agreement which will give them access across their organization. Schools interested in this option should contact their preferred education reseller for pricing.

School districts and municipalities with a Microsoft Enrollment for Education Solutions volume licensing agreement may add Minecraft: Education Edition to their agreement which will give them access across their organization. Schools interested in this option should contact their preferred education reseller for pricing.

Minecraft: Education Edition is a special version of the game developed specifically for educational use. It’s just as engaging for students as the core game, but easy for teachers to set up, with added features and controls for classrooms, such as secure student login IDs, editable boundaries, and a tutorial for first-time educator use.

MinecraftEdu is a modified version of Minecraft developed for schools and sold by a company called TeacherGaming. Minecraft: Education Edition builds on the early learnings from MinecraftEdu, while growing and expanding its feature set. Working with the MinecraftEdu creators Joel Levin and Santeri Koivisto, we started with all the learnings from the MinecraftEdu mod, and built its key features into the Minecraft: Education Edition. We also added new features including login and personalization, the student portfolio feature, and the ability to save student progress.

Minecraft: Education Edition will be available for purchase by schools, libraries, museums, and participants in nationally recognized home-school organizations. For those unsure if their institution qualifies, specific details on eligibility are:

• An eligible educator must be a full-time or part-time faculty or staff member at an academic institution and have a school-specific email address provided by the school (for example, contoso.edu) that can receive external email.

• An eligible district or school must be a qualified education user, defined as an accredited institution organized and operated exclusively for the purpose of teaching its enrolled students.

• An eligible public library must provide general library services without charge to all residents of a given community, district, or region.

• An eligible public museum must be an agency or institution organized on a permanent basis for essentially education or aesthetic purposes, and utilize a professional staff to exhibit tangible objects to the public on a regular basis.

• Finally, an eligible home-school program must provide K-12 education to a student or students with written proof that it either belongs to a nationally-recognized home-schooling organization or is expressly recognized by a local school district as an acceptable alternative to an accredited or state-recognized/approved educational institution.

Use the following links to learn more about eligibility qualifications: US-based organizations, Canada-based organizations, or European-based organizations. For all other regions, visit the Microsoft Education website.

If an individual is not affiliated with an academic institution, they will not be able to purchase Minecraft: Education Edition. However, they can purchase other versions of Minecraft such as Minecraft for PC/Mac, Xbox, Windows 10, or Pocket Edition. Many educators use these other versions of Minecraft in their classrooms already. Regardless of which version an individual chooses, all educators are invited to learn more at http://education.minecraft.net, where they can ramp up on Minecraft quickly using collateral shared by other educators.

School districts and municipalities with a Microsoft Enrollment for Education Solutions volume licensing agreement may add Minecraft: Education Edition to their agreement which will give them access across their organization. Schools interested in this option should contact their preferred education reseller for pricing.

Students will be able to use Minecraft: Education Edition at home by signing in using their school log-in.

Please check the minimum specifications for Windows 10 and macOS:

Not at this time. Minecraft: Education Edition will enable multiplayer at a classroom scale, which is simple for teachers to set up and play locally in schools. Going forward, we will continue to listen to teacher feedback to determine whether a hosted solution would be useful in education.

Mods are modifications to Minecraft, available through a number of third-party websites. They can add or remove content to the game, or change how it is played. Mods are not currently supported in Minecraft: Education Edition.

Video games are a great way to engage students and personalize lessons. They provide “an opportunity to focus our energy, with relentless optimism, at something we’re good at (or getting better at) and enjoy” [McGonigal, 2011]. Researchers in 2013 found that 30 minutes of daily video game play led to increased brain plasticity along with additional development in areas crucial for spatial reasoning, strategic planning, working memory, and motor skills [Kunh, 2013].

• Kuhn, Simone. Playing Super Mario induces structural brain plasticity. Molecular Psychiatry, 2014 Vol. 19, pgs 265-271. Web. 16 Sept. 2015.

Other relevant research:

• Bos, B., Wilder, L., Cook, M. & O’Donnell, R. Learning Mathematics through Minecraft. Teaching Children Mathematics, Vol. 21. No. 1 (August 2014), pp. 56-59.

• Canossa, A., Martinez, J., Togelius, J. (2013) Give Me a Reason to Dig: Minecraft and Psychology of Motivation. In Ieee conference on computational intelligence and games.

• D’Angelo, C., Rutstein, D., Harris, C., Bernard, R., Borokhovshi, E., Haertel, G. (2013). Simulations for STEM Learning: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis (Executive Summary). Menlo Park, CA: SRI International.

• Gee, J. (2007). What Video Games Have to Teach Us About Learning and Literacy, New York, NY: St. Martin’s Press

• Kapp, K. (2012) The Gamification of Learning and Instruction: Game-based Methods and Strategies for Training and Education. San Francisco, CA: Pfeiffer.

• Lopez, J. & Garrido, C. Pedagogical Integration of the Application Minecraft EDU in Elementary School: A Case Study. Universidad de Murcia. Pixel-Bit. Revista de Medios y Educacion. No. 45. July 2014

• McGonigal, J. (2011). Reality Is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better and They Can Change the World. New York, NY: Penguin.

• Takeuchi, L. M., & Vaala, S. (2014). Level up learning: A National Survey on Teaching with Digital Games. New York: The Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop.

• Toppo, G (2015). The Game Believes In You: How Digital Play Can Make Our Kids Smarter. New York, NY: St. Martin’s Press

Download Minecraft on your phone, PC, or console! The best way to learn Minecraft is to play Minecraft. Also, ask your students about how they learned to play Minecraft. You’ll hear some amazing ideas. Building a replica of your school in Minecraft is a fun and easy project to get started with.

As of November 1, 2016, Minecraft: Education Edition is available for purchase by educators around the world for $5 per user, per year, or through an organizational-wide volume licensing model. Interested educators can access the program at http://education.minecraft.net.

We understand the financial demands on today’s schools and educators, and are committed to making Minecraft: Education Edition as affordable and accessible as possible.  Our current pricing levels are in line with many other educational software and services, and we believe there is great value in having Minecraft in the classroom as a virtual maker space, replacing many alternative hands-on learning lab kits which are more expensive.

Our team is adding countries frequently. To access the current list, please click on the following link from our knowledge base.

https://education.minecraft.net/knowledgebase/country-availability/

Sign Up or Sign In

Whether you’re already a member of the Minecraft Educator Community or looking to sign up, click below to join us. We’re glad you’re here.

Join the community