Thanks for starting the conversation, Nancy.
Zack and I have discussed the amount of time he’s playing video games at school, as well as screen time at home, and how that ends up impacting how he feels and interacts with others vs times when he’s more active. He has agreed that he should limit when he’s bringing technology to school to certain days. He’s also limiting screen time at home and spending more time playing outside because it makes him feel happier.
He is very interested in learning to build a Minecraft server, and I believe a few other kids are either already doing that or interested in building one. To that end, I spoke to my brother (professional tech geek 🙂 ) about what we would need and finding a resource to help the kids with how to build a server. He gave me some specs and has offered to come in and do a workshop for the kids to help them build their own Minecraft server. He has some great ideas about how this could be used for future learning also, ie architecture by building in the game, logic using the redbricks, etc.
Some things he thought we need to consider:
Do we have a physical space where a server could “live”?
If multiple people will be connecting, he recommended that we need a machine with at least 8G of RAM to act as a dedicated server (vs someone’s machine also acting as the server)
How would we designate an admin within the game: Adult vs child as admin; Makes sure that game is running smoothly, everyone is following agreed upon terms for play; Should be someone who is mature, enjoys playing the game and can help less experienced players
Do we want the server to be password protected
Do we currently have internet access at the school?
Do we want a “Vanilla” Minecraft build, or one with mods already built in?
Safety and security for kids possibly visiting Minecraft Community sites. There are lots of “click-bait” type adds on these sites.