Where the rich tradition of Catholic Education lives on in 21st century classrooms
St. Bart's Becomes First School in the ADW to Integrate Minecraft: Education Edition
Minecraft: Education Edition has come to St. Bart's based on the suggestion of St. Bart's graduate and now senior at St. John's, Preston Hull. His family has subsequently stepped up to pay for licenses so students can take advantage of the revolutionary learning platform. Minecraft: Education Edition is based on Minecraft, the world's best-selling video game. The game-based learning platform engages and entertains children while teaching them coding, math, geography, history, science, and more.
Seventeen-year-old Hull, already a seasoned programmer and app developer, believes today’s youth learn most effectively this way. “I believe that students learn best when they enjoy their learning,” says Hull. “The game has no end. It is a limitless sandbox for the player (or players) to explore, build, and design.”
The Minecraft: Education Edition includes tutorials, classroom management tools, collaboration ideas, and many sample lessons in different subjects that teachers can map directly to specific learning outcomes and curriculum standards. Beyond just learning to code, the open learning environment gives students the freedom to experiment-- encouraging creative self-expression and problem solving while developing 21st century skills critical for success in the workforce.
Minecraft: Education Edition currently is used in more than 115 countries. Studies show that students who use the immersive learning tool show significant increases in problem solving, collaboration, creativity, and computation skills. “For example, instead of completing a worksheet on creating and using sodium acetate, the Educational Edition of the game allows the player to craft sodium acetate, and then craft an ice bomb, which the player can then use on water to create a circle of ice,” says Hull. “This feedback loop is unrivaled anywhere else, and encourages the students to create new compounds, experiment with small modifications to the recipes, and possibly build a new world using the information they learned in the classroom, even on their own time.”
Since graduating from St. Bartholomew in 2016, Hull has remained close to the school and its community. “During the eight years I spent at St. Bart’s, the teachers and staff educated me, but they were also friendly to talk to outside of class,” he says. “St. Bart’s offers a warm, welcoming community to all, even those who may feel marginalized by other communities,” Hull reflects. “Even now, four years since I last attended St. Bart’s as a student, I still consider myself a part of its community. All of this is why I feel it is necessary to give back to the community and to give the students a new and exciting way to learn.”
Trailblazers in Education: CCSE Recognizes St. Bart's
Posted October 14, 2018; updated August 19, 2019
This fall of 2017, the Catholic Coalition for Special Education (CCSE) awarded St. Bart's with a generous grant to support our efforts to offer an inclusive education to all children. Our mission is to provide a top-notch Catholic education to any child who seeks it, and this grant has made it possible to add additional resource staff to support all of our learners, including those with Down Syndrome, ADHD, and dyscalcula among others.
Our Resource Team consists of department chair, Mrs. Barbara Brown (Zoey '20), Reading Specialist Laura Digges, Certified Special Educator Amanda McMurtrie Herndon, and assistant Jennifer Slater.
On March 16, 2019 St. Bartholomew School was recognized as a Trailblazer in Education at the CCSE Believe in Me! Spring Benefit and in August 2019 CCSE has committed to awarding St. Bart's a second grant award.
We are also fortunate to have been awarded support by Tribute 21, another wonderful organization dedicated to raising awareness and funds to support those with Down Syndrome.
Learn more about CCSE and their incredible work in the community.