Microsoft UK and The Crown Estate have partnered together to educate students across the UK about the challenges of planning offshore wind farms and protecting the marine environment through two new Minecraft Education worlds. The ‘Offshore Wind Power Challenge’ will test students green skills—and the second world, based on the iconic Windsor Great Park, will have these bright minds learning about conservation and ecology. Minecraft Education provides educational content for schools globally where students can learn about a wide variety of subjects via creative gameplay.
More specifically, in the ‘Offshore Wind Power Challenge’ students will see if they can power a coastal village by designing and building an offshore wind farm. In doing so they will have to navigate the need to produce renewable energy, whilst balancing the needs of all other marine users including the impact on natural habitats. While the Windsor Great Park world will offer students a unique opportunity to manage the ecological health of the historic park through the immersive world of Minecraft by completing a series of quests to learn about the water cycle, the aquatic food chain, conservation and environmental management.
The team at Minecraft Education and The Crown Estate are excited to share this initiative to inspire the future generation of environmentalists and conservationalists. Per Judith Everett, Executive Director for Purpose, Stakeholder and Sustainability at The Crown Estate:
This is a fabulous opportunity to team up with Microsoft and share worlds with young people to gain insights and deepen their understanding of the urgent and complex challenges of climate change and nature protection.
At The Crown Estate we are fortunate to be stewards of some of the UK’s most incredible natural environments, including the seabed and Windsor Great Park. One of our key roles is to manage the demands of today, whilst protecting the natural environment for the long term. By recreating these worlds in Minecraft, we are giving students and teachers a safe and fun way to experience some of the opportunities and challenges involved in managing the transition to Net Zero and protecting our natural habitats.
As well as words from Justin Edwards, Director of Learning Experiences for Minecraft Education:
We’re committed to making a better world through the power of play, and it’s never been more important to educate and inspire players everywhere, across all devices, about the effects of climate change. This partnership is an important part of that mission. It follows previous collaborations with the UK Environment Agency and BBC Studios’ Frozen Planet II. I believe that these Minecraft worlds could well usher in the next generation of wind farm engineers or nature conservationists!
This initiative not only includes two new worlds created for Minecraft Education, but also each will come with supporting lesson plans and teaching materials aligned with the curriculums in each of the UK’s devolved nations. The worlds are also due to be released on Minecraft Bedrock Edition later this year, as will Welsh language versions of the two worlds. You can download these worlds by going to The Crown Estate’s site right over here. Check out the trailer below for a peak at what you can expect.