I'm teaching Junior (Year 7) Geography for the first time in a number of years this year, and I'm looking for a way to liven up the teaching - make it more student-centered and allow opportunities for creative approaches. One of the topics that we look at is different biomes and ecosystems, and I was thinking that it would be fun to get students to create virtual models of a particular environment in Minecraft, and then act as virtual 'tour guides' showing everyone else around their model.
I've seen Minecraft in action, and I've heard lots about its benefits in the classroom, but I've never actually used it. I work in a 1:1 iPad school, so access to the technology shouldn't be an issue. I was hoping that the collective wisdom of the Edutopia community might have some advice on how to proceed. What kinds of things should I look out for? What kind of ground rules would be valuable? How much freedom should I allow?
Thanks in advance.
If you're not sure what I'm talking about, here's a link to the Minecraft wiki: http://minecraft.gamepedia.com/Minecraft_in_education