Engaging Microsoft

Filling the pail

I quite like the Minecraft computer game. I like the way that players build something of their own rather than chase after the limited objective of most games. I hadn’t realised that Minecraft was owned by Microsoft through a subsidiary but, if I had, this wouldn’t bother me.

Education is often characterised by a debate between those who favour child-centred methods and those who prefer a teacher-led approach. I’ve noticed a tendency of the former to accuse the latter of being in cahoots with big business. They point, for instance, to Pearson and its role in testing. But business is really just there to provide stuff that people will buy. For every company selling us tests and textbooks there will be one selling Minecraft as an engaging activity that you can guide students through from the side. Business is neutral. It is up to us as a profession to decide…

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