Monday, 8 December 2014

Week 7 -The Final Week!

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Teacher Reflections - Week 7

Thoughts for Week 7
Continue 'thinking' focus next week to raise the quality of the students build. Refocus on adding something to achieve a ' wow' moment.
Encourage students to search Minecraft wikis to discover new recipes.
Continue with video rehearsals - this will speed up video time & give a more polished group reflection.

Monday, 1 December 2014

Week 6 - Build and Record!

WALT – Think

Success criteria
·       be curious try to find out from the web examples of your builds in real life
·       be creative by adding the finishing touches to your build
·       be reflective by making your movie about what you have built

Screen Shot 2014-11-24 at 11.55.37 pm.png

Choose a goal that matches one or more of the success criteria - match it to your build group - for example ' I am going to be curious and find out what a police station actually looks like inside 

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Teacher Reflections - Week 6

Thoughts for week 6
KC - thinking about your build and now refine it. Be creative, perhaps add something that will make people go ‘wow’!
Be reflective in your thought process - think more closely at the detail of your build and improve an element of it. Ask advice on how to improve your build.

Things to consider
- view ULearn14 Minecraft student video again to compare and perhaps get more ideas to
 improve our World.
- roads to nowhere?
- consider our own Christchurch community - roads, traffic lights, roundabouts & signposts,
 public gardens and play parks
- consider Pioneer fitness centre/ old QEII for comparison.
- consider our houses and gardens in ChCh - rooftops, chimneys and fences

Next step learning
* Prompts sheet needed and practiced scripts to share their deeper inner thoughts about options they had and choices they made.

Audrey's Reflection Week 6
This week for me was the best for taking thinking to the next level. Most students claimed they had finished their first build. I set them a challenge to go back and add more detail, add something that will make someone say 'wow, that's awesome!'. Jake's re-lighting fire was a great example of a 'wow' moment showing a 'can do' attitude to persevere and work through to succeed.

The group video reflection again displayed thinking to the next level. They drafted original thoughts and ideas on paper then were able to explain their options and give reasons for their choices.

Making Moivies

A big challenge for Room 19 this week. with only two weeks to go we really want to finish off our builds, but we also need to complete our reflection videos. The software is all set up, we just need time to record. 


  • SHARING - These videos will be the only evidence we have of our world. We could get screen shots, but a video fly-by with our reflections on would a cool way to share our project with the real world. Our school and our parents will get to see our project

  • REFLECTION - a great way for us to think about how we have done and what we had to go through. This fits in with thinking about our goals and reflecting on them, part of Managing Ourselves. We can look back and see how we have developed our skills for the Key Competencies. 

  • INSPIRING - when we started this project we watched an amazing video by a Year 7 student called Thomas. His class had made a world based on a novel. It was a great inspiration for us to make our project come to life. It would be awesome if our videos could inspire other Minecrafters at different schools!

  • THE 4 Cs CommunicationCreativity, Collaboration and Critical Thinking - to make a successful video we will need to communicate our ideas through oral language (speaking). We will ned two have discussed with our team what we would like to say, we will be thinking about how we have done and we will be reflecting upon what we have created


  • Danny at the South Learning Centre has set up the webcam and recording software. We will get to record our videos using a prompt sheet we have made up in class. We will take turns over the final two sessions to record and then later we can upload to Youtube for maximum sharing!


  • In class we will figure our some basics we would like to include. Perhaps a mix between what we built, why we built it, what options we had, what decisions we made? Also what major problems did we come across. We will have a class discussion to see what else we might like to include. 
Here is a prompt sheet we have figured out in class to help us with our movie commentary

  • How did we get started?
  • What inspired us? 
  • Why did we use certain materials?
  • Why did we choose our location? 
  • What choices could we have made?
  • Why did we not choose these?

  • Did we change our minds? Why?
  • What next? 

Monday, 24 November 2014

Week 5 - More Build Time!

This session will look more at why the Key Competencies (KCs) are our focus.

WALT – Self Manage

Success criteria
·       Set goals connected to Self Manage
·       Reflect upon this goal by giving real examples of how it went
·       Begin to understand why a Key Competency is important
Display the 3 x KCs posters that we have been using.

Screen Shot 2014-11-24 at 11.55.37 pm.png

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Teacher Reflections - Week 5

Danny Week 5 Reflection

Time to consider how things look and how it all links together as a whole in the “Thorrington minecraft community”. Signage and ascetics need to be considered now that the infrastructure is in place. Video feedback worked well but was slower than expected and can’t be replicated on to each machine which is unfortunate as the students were pretty keen to get on board with this mode of reflection. Everyone is getting on well and adhering to the rules in general. Engagement is still high and the work done at school helps a great deal.

Audrey's Reflection week 5
Great to see Anton persevere building his elevator for the 3rd time. He showed true determination to get it functioning with red-stone circuits.
My discussion with the hotel group clarified the difference in hotel levels. Higher levels resulting in better views, better quality and higher costs made them think about their penthouse creation.
The school group have worked hard to clear their area and start their build. It will be interesting how they see their classroom layout  - traditional v modern?
The video trial - good to test as the conversations by the selected students were basic retells of what we could see and not of the decision and negotiations that had taken place to get to that final finished build. *

Saturday, 22 November 2014

Week 5 - Class Debate

Some issues have come up that the class need to discuss before our next session. 

Here is the list. We will go through these on class. 


  • Armour for horses?
  • Who keeps potions?
  • Visiting other build groups projects, should we ask permission, should we give feedback?
  • How do we organise money? 
  • Beacons - how to make them and how many should we have? 
See the minutes of our debate - some great examples of Relating to others:

  • Recognising Different Points of View
  • Negotiating 
  • Playing fairly
  • Sharing ideas cooperatively

Armour for horses.
Anna suggested that only the police have diamond armour, but that the farmers could have gold armour.  Hayley also suggested that other people could have it, but would need a good reason.   Those that don’t actually need the armour shouldn’t have it.
Bobbie suggested that the spawn people could act as a council to help make decisions.
Samantha suggested that police and farmers have diamond armour and everyone else could have gold.
Tommy suggested that the others, except police and farmers could have iron armour.
Gary-george suggested that hospital could have iron armour as they need more protection.


Who keeps potions?
Henry -police should have slowness potions and the hospital should have healing potions.
Could also have speed potions to get to help others quickly.
Jamie -Thomas and Jamie are making the potions and the hospital will dispense
Hayley -the hospital could have a place to dispense all potions.
Lucy -the farmers need access to potions incase animals get sick or poisoned


Visiting other build groups projects, should we ask permission, should we give feedback?
Jake M -You can look at what they are doing, but not add to it or build on it.  You can give them suggestions and feedback.
Bobbie -need permission, you would go onto chat to ask.  You also need to have a purpose for going there and must give feedback.
Rylee -spawn site to act as council, people ask if there is free time to visit

How do we organise money?
Jake M  the owner the game (teacher) build a bank and put money in it.  They work out who gets paid what.
Zain -jewels eg diamond could be money
Tommy -gold nuggets as coins and jewels/minerals as notes e.g. emerald.  
Gary-George- 64 of the gold = 1 diamond, etc etc
Kate -could have points that are worth e.g. 10 points and spend them each session (written on a separate thing, e,g paper)
Thomas - we need to make a mine to get the minerals and stones.   A place could be past the swamp.
Tommy -could enchant things to make a currency.  Only the teacher has access to the command.

Beacons - how to make them and how many should we have?
Bobbie -no beacons or only ones turned on at night
Jamie -don’t need lots of beacons, only the hospital and the spawn centre
Josh -only the hospital and spawn centre need them because they are next to each other.
Kate -two beacons, they only go when you are having a meeting.  Can’t have them at the same as it will be confusing.
Zain -G=glass  N=netherstar  O=obsidian      GGG  GNG  OOO
Callum need some at the beach as well
Thomas -we don’t need a beacon if we have potions.

Monday, 17 November 2014

Week 4

WALT – Self Manage

Success Criteria

-        have a ‘can do’ attitude
-        listen to feedback and act on it
-        show perseverance
high standards of build

A great session, well done Room 19! We recapped on last weeks build and introduced the focus for this week. As we have to get going on our build we thought that 'Self Manage' would be a great focus for our goal setting. Below is the Pre Padlet board. Each student thought about an aspect of the WALT that they would like to be thinking of as they worked in their build groups. Later in the blog the class reflected on how their goal went. 

We had some interesting topics to discuss, see below. We also had 'Minecraft Natural Disaster' to deal with. Last week some students from another school gained access to our server and flooded our world. Danny our Learning Centre Teacher managed to sort the water out in the week but the class had to spend a bit of time checking their builds and making small repairs. 

See below for some of the issues that came up this week. For more details on how the build groups got on, check out the Padlets and the Student blogs on the right of this class blog! 

Links to Week 4 padlets 

Items for our mid session discussion - We might have to talk about these in class as we ran out of time 

  • Armour for horses?
  • Who keeps potions?
  • Visiting other build groups projects, should we ask permission, should we give feedback?
  • How do we organise money? 
  • Beacons - how to make them and how many should we have? 

Well done and big thanks to Jake for sharing with the class how to make beacons. These will really help us when we switch to Survival mode!

Also thanks to Carter for sharing how to use the Block Inspector tool to see the materials that have been used. 

Nice one Jamie for thinking about how to create a 'library' i the Spawn Block so we can access each other's blogs through a weblink! 

See below for our latest screen shot of our world. As you can see the builds are really taking shape. Below this image is our first screen shot taken at then end of Session 1. 

Here are some photos from this weeks session!

Teacher Reflections - Week 4

Week 4 Reflections from Danny

Once again the students came in enthusiastic and keen to get moving with building their respective areas within the community. The background work that had been done in the classroom was evident in the preliminary discussion at the start of the session. Everyone seemed to understand and have a good level respect for the terms set out in the treaty that had been agreed to.

Padlet continues to be a useful tool to capture student thoughts, achievements and challenges.

As the building of the world continues, more and more instances occur that require the group to problem solve as a collective. There were several “incidents” that gave rise to useful debate this week, one boy inadvertently poisoned a group of horses causing quite a commotion in the first instance but after discussion the matter was resolved very effectively and in my opinion this has been one of the upsides of this trial - students are forced to deal with all sorts of situations in a rational, calm, manner that will be a very useful skill for the future.

I would still like to see a video log of some kind with the students talking about their work whilst showing it. I am thinking perhaps a session at the end of the build where each student gives a brief tour of the part of the world they had most to do with. This would surely show any observer the level of engagement that is happening with this trial.

Audrey's Reflection week 4
This project has a good Inquiry balance for all involved  – although we had an idea of where it could go , we have discovered situations that we hadn’t given a lot of thought, like potions, money/ trading and beacons, which have raised many issues.  These ideas have resulted in super class discussions and resolutions.
The Key Competencies are at the forefront driving the focus on ‘self’ to set high standards and how to cope with adversity, to think, be curious and creative and  to recognise others views and negotiate a happy outcome.
I love that collaboration has no barriers, boys happily sharing with girls and less able being taught new skills from experienced students. Students sharing their knowledge as a tutor is empowering.
Yes we are using Minecraft but that almost seems a by-product with all the other rich learning, skills and collaboration happening.
I am looking forward to watching/hearing the students self reflection on their builds via video recordings. This will delve into their inner decision making and reasoning.