Getting to Know the “Coding in Minecraft” Credential by Prodigy Learning

There are educators out there who know everything about coding—and then there’s the rest of us—asked to teach coding because we’ve had limited exposure to coding in some form. So, how does someone who’s not an expert teach coding like a genius? “Coding in Minecraft” by Prodigy Learning is the answer.

Minecraft is the best-selling video game of all time. “Coding in Minecraft” leverages that familiarity to help students learn the basics of coding through a teacher-facilitated program. Andrea Tolley, a middle school educator in Tennessee said, “I’ve found my students’ love for Minecraft seems to be unwavering! Of course, it doesn’t take the place of a teacher, but it aides the teacher in hooking the students and improving their understanding and retention of the curriculum being taught because it is hands-on learning. The technology helps the students become active participants in the learning process.”

Find out all the details for the “Coding in Minecraft” program to see if it works for you and your students.

What is the “Coding in Minecraft” credential?

“Coding in Minecraft” is a computer science credential program with supporting curriculum, delivered through Minecraft: Education Edition and hosted on Azure. The pathway comprises four courses that immerse students in a Minecraft world to develop and prove their coding skills using MakeCode and JavaScript or Python. Each course has an associated credential which are awarded by the teacher using formative assessment.

The proctored capstone credential exam can be taken in any web browser and proves students’ skills in block-based coding and either JavaScript or Python.

The pathway comprises four credentials, each with an associated curriculum where learning is delivered in the game. Students earn the capstone credential by taking a proctored capstone exam. The first two credentials—introduction and intermediate—use easy-to-learn block-based coding in MakeCode to introduce beginners to basic coding concepts. The advanced course introduces students to text-based coding in JavaScript or Python.

Why use the “Coding in Minecraft” credential?

Coding can be daunting for many students, and teachers. “Coding in Minecraft” can help students lay a solid coding foundation to prepare them for more advanced IT certifications in the future. And it’s fun! Game-based learning helps keep young and diverse learners engaged in coding lessons. While your students engage with the game and coding, they’re also learning valuable computational thinking and problem-solving skills, developing creativity, collaborating with peers, and gaining invaluable confidence in their knowledge.

“Coding in Minecraft” is also helpful for teachers who are new to coding, making it easy for teachers of all abilities to deliver. Plus, the program is supported by comprehensive professional development, allowing teachers to learn alongside their students.

Added bonus? “Coding in Minecraft” is aligned to various national, international and US State Computer Science standards such as the Computer Science Teacher’s Association (CSTA) standards and is a CAPE Digital Tool Certificate in the State of Florida, so it’s been approved by experts in the CS education field.

What will my students learn from the “Coding in Minecraft” program?

Each “Coding in Minecraft” credential has several learning objectives.

Introduction to Coding Using MakeCode

  • Develop a set of rules for using an online collaborative platform
  • Develop an understanding of coding language
  • Create a program for a given task using sequential steps
  • Modify an existing program to solve errors and predict if a program will fail
  • Reflect on the debugging process in an age-appropriate way
  • Undertake a collaborative activity including allocating tasks, defining a timeline and refining a solution by providing and acting on feedback

Intermediate Coding Using MakeCode

  • Develop a file storage strategy for a world being exported at various stages of completion
  • Identify the difference between various standard programming blocks in MakeCode
  • Predict, without running, the outcome of a series of MakeCode blocks
  • Predict, without running, the outcome of making series of changes to MakeCode blocks
  • Identify an error in an existing MakeCode program
  • Demonstrate the use of loops, variables, and logic
  • Given a problem, develop and explain a MakeCode program to formulate a solution
  • Demonstrate the use of modularity

Advanced Coding Using JavaScript or Python

  • Identify a scenario where you could reuse existing blocks or code to accomplish a task
  • Given some code, identify iteration and section blocks in MakeCode and JavaScript code, and explain the use and results of each block
  • Following a set of written instructions, determine the outcome
  • Identify the blocks of JavaScript which relate to the equivalent MakeCode blocks
  • Given a problem, design and develop a solution using MakeCode
  • Given a series of instructions with syntax errors, identify the errors and provide solutions
  • Incorporate existing code and use modularity

The objectives for the Capstone Credential exam are detailed below:

Capstone Exam

Designing and Developing Algorithms

  • Design and create algorithms
  • Predict the outcome of running a series of statements
  • Apply and understand the concept of iteration
  • Apply and understand the concept of selection
  • Debug and resolve problems in algorithms

Coding in block-based coding using MakeCode

  • Apply and understand variable types in MakeCode
    • Text, number, Boolean, coordinate
    • Perform arithmetic operations on variables
    • Perform string concatenation on text variables
  • Apply and understand logic in MakeCode
    • IF THEN statements
    • IF THEN ELSE statements
  • Apply and understand comparison operators in MakeCode
    • Equal to, not equal to, greater than (or equal to) and less than (or equal to)
  • Apply and understand iteration in MakeCode
    • Repeat loops
    • For loops
    • While loops
  • Identify and resolve errors in MakeCode

Coding in text-based coding using JavaScript

  • Identify where code could be re-used
  • Follow JavaScript code and predict the outcome
  • Identify and understand logic in JavaScript
    • IF THEN statements
    • IF THEN ELSE statements
  • Identify and understand comparison operators in JavaScript
    • Equal to, not equal to, greater than (or equal to) and less than (or equal to)
  • Identify and understand iteration in JavaScript
    • Repeat loops
    • For loops
    • While loops
  • Identify and understand errors in JavaScript
    • Syntax errors
    • Semantic errors

What are the exam prerequisites?

There are no prerequisites for the “Coding in Minecraft”. It is meant to be an introductory foray into the world of coding. This program serves as an onramp for further industry certifications or CTE pathways, such as Information Technology Specialist, Unity Certified User, or App Development with Swift.

How long will it take my students to work through each course?

The recommended guided learning hours (GLH) for each course is 20, however, this will vary depending on the grade and reading level of the students.

Does the program include curriculum and practice tests?

Yes. “Coding in Minecraft”’ is licensed per user (student or educator), per annum and this license entitles the user to access the “Coding in Minecraft” online platform to do the following:

  • Download and use the “Coding in Minecraft” curriculum (a Minecraft: Education Edition world containing learning content and assessments) in school, at home or both
  • Submit evidence of assessments
  • Undertake the Capstone Credential exam
  • Access their credentials, certificates, and digital badges upon being awarded
  • Enable teachers to manage student access to licenses and grade students’ assessments.

Interested in learning more about the “Coding in Minecraft” program? Request a demo here.