More than 100 million people populate Minecraft, where they can build their own worlds and inhabit them through play. These fictional worlds empower people with the tools to transform their own environments. This is what architecture ought to be.
— Bjarke Ingels, Architect
Minecraft is an online game that allows users to build houses, cities, underground bunkers, and whole virtual worlds using 3D textured cubes that represent different materials. It works very much like the CAD programs that professional designers use to design objects, buildings, and cities.
The nature and popularity of Minecraft encourages teamwork and real-time collaboration. So, in this 4-week afterschool program, young designers presently in grades 4-6 will work together to build a Minecraft city that demonstrates principles of urban sustainability, a crucial issue for the next generation. At present, 54% of the people on earth live in cities, but by 2050, that number will rise to 67%, meaning that we need to design cities thoughtfully.
For young designers in grades 4-6
Participating young designers will:
Learn about and build homes, civic, industrial and commercial structures
Learn about and discuss “green” concepts, sustainability in urban environments, transportation systems, and built alternative energy infrastructure
Develop vocabulary necessary to discuss urban environments, including design vocabulary ('scale', 'rhythm,' 'walkability,' 'density') and social vocabulary ('mobility,' 'sense of place,' 'community values,' 'housing equity' )
Refine their understanding of architecture and the built environment and its impact on individuals and communities
Learn to use Minecraft as a design tool for exploring and addressing real-world problems
Use the design thinking process as a means of addressing the challenges they face in this course
Refine the human interaction skills used in design thinking, including empathy, teamwork, brainstorming, prototyping, and testing and refining ideas
Improve their coding skills as they learn more refined ways to interact with Minecraft
This “green city” will be built on the MODA Minecraft server, meaning that participants will be able to continue to access their work and keep collaborating with one another and with others once their after-school program ends.
Minecraft Mission: Green City will meet from 4:00-5:30 p.m. on four consecutive Tuesdays: August 9, 16, 23, and 30.
$130 / $120 for MODA members