Last Monday, my teaching partner Melinda Shaughnessy offered to share her Minecraft selfie idea with me. Since I was just introducing transformational geometry to my students, I thought this would be a great way start. I left my supply teacher instructions to have my students self direct their learning; to research transformations, watch instructional videos and read webpages that they found relevant and met their learning needs. They took jot notes as they researched and then conquered the Minecraft selfie to demonstrate their understanding of what they had learned.
When I returned the following day, I took a video of a few exemplars and tweeted it which allowed me to share some good examplars with my students. I also share our learning with my students’ parents and included the tweet in our weekly blog.
The tweet received a lot of attention from the greater education community:
Many teachers asked for more information and said that they’d like to try the activity with their class. So, in the spirit of sharing, I’ve compiled a PDF that will help get teachers get started. My class would LOVE to see how your Minecraft selfies turn out. Please tag us in a tweet!
I’d also like to share an extension idea. A past student, Karli Bender, has recently stated teaching in the UK. She contacted me hoping to start a “pen pal friendship” between my class and hers. Of course, I’m all over it and my kids are beyond excited. Here’s my idea: I’m going to have my kids create another Minecraft selfie, this time with the goal of representing themselves as accurately as possible on a larger sized grid paper. They will then write with the body of their letter including three paragraphs; the first on their appearance, the second on their personality and the last on personal facts. We’ll send the letters with the Minecraft selfies included. Karli’s class will be tasked with reading the letters and trying to match the selfies to the writer. If time permits, I’ll have my kids voice record (podcast their letters as well).
Karli has recently written to ask if I know of another class who may be interested in becoming pen pals with her other class. I’m pretty sure I do…. I’ll be asking Mrs. Shaughnessey if her class would like to share in the fun!
Thanks Melinda for sharing your Minecraft selfie activity.
There truly is power in sharing!