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Play The World of Mindcraft: No Purchase Necessary

January 25, 2010

Computer scientist Alan Perlis complained about education, saying, “It goes against the grain of modern education to teach students to program,” asking, “What fun is there to making plans, acquiring discipline, organizing thought, devoting attention to detail, and learning to be self-critical?” Yet the things he describes are exactly the kinds of things that are part of fun in learning. The problem is that not everyone is interested in learning to program. And without interest, almost any activity, no matter how fascinating it is to someone else, is drudgery (see post: “There IS a Formula for Drudgery,” September 16, 2009).

When you’re in school, there’s definitely going to be some drudgery involved whether or not a subject interests you. It’s difficult to avoid it. Almost every discipline has knowledge and skills that take time and deliberate attention to acquire, so even if you love a particular subject, you’re likely to encounter times when what you’re studying is just plain hard work. If you don’t love it, the work may be even harder. Doing the hard work is empowering. Grappling with confusion and uncertainty and coming to understanding builds belief in your ability to successfully meet the challenges not just of school, but of life. It is fun to complete an assignment and know that the work you hand in is meaningful and represents real effort on your part.

It’s week four here on the quarter system and mid-terms are coming. There’s still time to turn the quarter around if you haven’t been making an effort to engage. There’s still time to pay attention, still time to produce quality work, still time to read and study and do what you need to do to be successful. There’s also still time to reflect on your part in the teaching/learning symbiosis, what Perllis refers to as learning to be self-critical. One of the questions students are asked on their course evaluations here is to rank themselves on the degree to which they took responsibility for their own learning. I am always surprised by the number of students who don’t give themselves the highest ranking here. And I always wonder why not.

In “The Curriculum of Necessity or What Must an Educated Person Know?”, John Taylor Gatto (2005) referenced ten learning abilities identified at Harvard University as essential for adapting to a rapidly changing world of work. As you read them, assess where you are as a student/human being related to each one:

• The ability to define problems without a guide.

• The ability to ask hard questions which challenge prevailing assumptions.

• The ability to work in teams without guidance.

• The ability to work absolutely alone.

• The ability to persuade others that your course is the right one.

• The ability to discuss issues and techniques in public with an eye to reaching decisions about policy.

• The ability to conceptualize and reorganize information into new patterns.

• The ability to pull what you need quickly from masses of irrelevant data.

• The ability to think inductively, deductively, and dialectically. (Note: dialectic, debate to resolve a conflict between two contradictory or seemingly contradictory ideas, with truth on both sides; grappling with essential tensions).

• The ability to attack problems heuristically. (Note: heuristic, trial and error solutions, discovery learning, rather than using set rules).

Assessing yourself isn’t enough. To be successful in school—and in life—you must also set goals that target building on your strengths and addressing your weaknesses. This isn’t a one-time activity, but an ongoing process. It’s playing the game of mindcraft and reaching higher and higher levels of self-empowerment as a learner.

What learning goals would be beneficial for you this term?

It’s not only the ability to raise and answer those questions [referring to habits of mind that explore evidence, point of view, connections, supposition, and relevance] though, but also the disposition to do so. For that matter, any set of intellectual objectives, any description of what it means to think deeply and critically, should be accompanied by a reference to one’s interest or intrinsic motivation to do such thinking. Dewey reminded us that the goal of education is more education. To be well-educated, then, is to have the desire as well as the means to make sure that learning never ends.
–Alfie Kohn (2004),
What Does It Mean To Be Well Educated?, pp. 9-10

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112 comments

  1. Hej


  2. hey im kewl so i can play this game


    • you are a bad speller in the world it is cool not kewl


      • i kown


  3. i have heard good things from my other online frinds and the said this is on of there favorits


    • me to i luv this game


  4. i love this game!!!!


  5. ilove this


  6. Cool Game!


  7. fun


  8. hey there


  9. this is so cool can t wait to kill something


  10. free mindcraft this so cool


  11. hey im kewl so i can play this game


  12. “W-OZ is amused by unrelated comments,” she says with third-personish detachment.


  13. lets play


  14. Looks fine to me.


  15. play mincraft


  16. i thought i downloaded the game, bought something but cant play or load the game. all i can do is log in…someone help me please!!


  17. oh, i can only actually play as a guest, just cant figure it out


  18. hi i want to join the mindcaft world


  19. this game is going to be cool


  20. lets play now


  21. this game is cool


  22. mindcraft is fun


  23. i love mindcraft


  24. nothing beter than mindcraft


  25. what do you have to do to play it for free? i couldnt figure it out by thoose paragraphs above. do you have to click onsomething? please help


  26. Seriously, folks. Just read the post. What more can I say? W-OZ


  27. logan


  28. I love mind craft


  29. yeah awesome game


  30. minecraft is awesome


  31. this gane rox


  32. THIS GAME BLOWS NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  33. doomtheday


  34. mindcraft


  35. how do i play


  36. thanks this is a great website


  37. cool game


  38. i love mindcraft
    i love mindcraft


  39. website is awsome.


  40. please tell me how to play mindcraft for free . What site do I need to go in? Thank You


  41. cool dog


  42. I have heared from my friends that this is a good game


  43. this game is fun


  44. how do you get mindcraft??


  45. i hate life and you should to


  46. cool game !!


  47. hi


  48. lets play


  49. how can you find mindcraft free game


  50. the game is cool


  51. this game is fun


  52. thank you fore the game


  53. pleas let me play


  54. i want to download the free version of minecraft


  55. so fun to play


  56. I LUV THIS GAME


  57. how do i play!!!!!!!!!!!!?


  58. ughhhhhhhhhhhh. this is stupid. i cant get to the game!


  59. plzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz can i play? my friends say its cool. :'{


  60. c’mon. how do i play! im gonna cry!!!! :<


  61. fuk this


  62. how do i play


    • really
      you do know how to play because
      i touaght you about a month ago
      :;


  63. hey its jeremy dj is leaving now! :D


  64. i love mindcraft i have seen it on youtube


  65. teeheee


  66. i love mindcraft : )


  67. i can find the website to get on mindcraft can someone help?


  68. mindcraft


    • CAN I PLAY


  69. I just don’t get it,how do you play?


  70. hey i dont get this is there a link or somthing somewere help pleasE?


  71. This game is awesome I just love it


  72. i would love to play really really bad


  73. i really really want to play this game


  74. yo


  75. how do you get to the game for no download newst version

    j


  76. how do i play??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????


  77. asome game guys


  78. I would like to play this game but it has to be cool:(
    If it isn’t cool I’m going to be angry.


  79. Seriously, just read the post and you will understand.


  80. WHO WANTS TO HAVE SEX MINDCRAFT


  81. its awsome ttyup


  82. ok


  83. `HOW DO I GIT THE GAME


  84. i now fucking website


  85. wutsup


  86. hi
    Ihavseenyourvideos.


  87. cool


  88. cool!!!!


  89. i like is game is mindcraft


  90. can i play


  91. y do you need 2 buy its make it free plz


  92. HOW DO YOU PLAY sorry caps


  93. please some one anser


  94. how the fuck do i play


  95. i know


  96. let me play mindcraft


    • I DONT NOW


  97. HOW


  98. what


  99. i like the game


  100. how do u play???


  101. Hi there! I simply wish to offer you a big thumbs up for the excellent information you
    have got here on this post. I’ll be coming back to your site for more soon.


  102. sup homies


  103. i wish you did not have to download or buy any mind craft



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