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The coolest little nerds, a dumb computer game and life skills

My younger boys (12 & 13) play a game called Mindcraft.  If you don’t know what it is – well, it’s stupid!  1970’s pixelated sim-world where you build your house, hunt for fuel, etc and ward off baddies.  BUT, while busy rolling my eyes and finding no redeeming value in it at all, I stopped in the hallway – one in his room, the other in his, on line (Skype) with friends, a group of them in a server one of them built, and building their little worlds, sharing tasks, working together, scheming development…  I did one of those hmmm noises and a sigh…  fast forward 15 years… they are engineers, working multi-site with others in other cities or even nations, using shared screen work, tasks, multi-tasking and scheming on shared projects – all remote.

Maybe there is some dumb redeeming value of a game I’d hate.  I listened to them develop the people skills to work out their challenges, disagreements, allowing on to lead in one phase and another when his strengths were best suited and they recognized it.  I was impressed.  Rather than male verbrato, there was some pretty cool cooperation and sharing a plan, executing it, and working towards a goal.  Not bad leadership development.  I can see it on a resumé/CV now…


PS.  They’ve not really discovered girls in a serious way.  Not a bad entertainment for the holiday – there is so much other stuff I’d be really concerned about.  Cool.


One response

  1. You should have a closer look at that game. It should not be underestimated at all. This is a global phenomenon. We still have Sims somewhere but Minecraft has taken over as it is faster to use.
    My 11 yr old daughter uses it in creative mode mostly to design and build houses and in fact a whole village of them. She is interested in architecture & engineering and having what looks like a 3d perspective modelling tool is very interesting to her and us. Most of the kids at her school have been using it in different ways and on different platforms. We have the touch screen iPad version which seems like it might be faster than some of the other versions.

    I have heard of lots of collaboration projects between the kids – many of them involve building and working together to do that which is one of the hallmarks of a great game.

    11 January 2013 at 21:41

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