Microsoft is adding Chromebook support to Minecraft: Education Edition, offering another way for schools to teach virtually this upcoming school year.
Designed specifically for a classroom setting, Minecraft: Education Edition provides tools for educators like virtual chalkboards and a Classroom mode that allows teachers to communicate with their students and view where they are throughout the game world. Educators can find user-created lessons on the Minecraft: Education Edition website that cover subjects including history and math. The lessons have players exploring the game’s map, like one that has students going on a scavenger hunt to learn the elements of the periodic table, that help kids learn by playing the game.
Minecraft: Education Edition on Chromebooks will offer the same features as other versions of the game, including cross-play support, so students can collaborate with players on Windows, iPads, and Macs. On Chromebooks, students will actually be using the Android app of Minecraft: Education Edition which now has added Chrome OS support, so kids and teachers will need to be using newer devices that support installing apps from the Google Play Store. Minecraft: Education Edition originally came out in 2016.
Chromebooks have become the dominant computing platform in US schools, making up nearly 60 percent of computers purchased by K-12 schools in 2018. As the school year draws near, some school districts are looking at virtual classrooms as an option because of the coronavirus pandemic.