Grade 5

Exploring in Minecraft

Empowered Learner, Creative Communicator


Students will create a world on Minecraft. They will eat, explore, and tell the difference between creative, survival, and exploration modes while placing and destroying blocks.

Students will:

  • Know the three modes of Minecraft and some abilities they can use in creating their own world.

Vocabulary Words:

  1. Creative Mode: Creative mode is the mode where students can make anything you want with no rule. 
  2. Survival Mode: Survival mode is the mode where students can craft items from blocks. In this mode, there is a set number of “lives”. You can breathe underwater for a limited amount of time and need to eat food.
  3. Exploration Mode: Exploration mode is like survival, but students need specific tools to do specific jobs and they can role play. 
  4. Blocks: Blocks are an item that students can use in some way in their worlds.

To prepare for this lesson:

  • Watch the video Minecraft Beginners Guide - Part 1 - Tools, Weapons, Food and Surviving to become familiar with the basics of Minecraft including how to create a world, eat, explore, place and destroy blocks, and the different modes.

  • If you are going to allow your students to play Minecraft at school, you will want to enroll in the Education Edition.

  • Install Minecraft on the student devices. 

  • You will want to visit this page to get started. You will need an Office 365 Education account to log in to the full version of Minecraft: Education Edition.

  • If you do not have a license, you can still use Minecraft: Education Edition with a limited number of logins. Minecraft: Education Edition is licensed via yearly subscriptions purchased through Authorized Education Partners or directly with the Microsoft Store for Education. 

  • If you would like to try a free demo lesson, the Hour of Code has a free lesson for you and your students to try. 

  • There are many class resources for teachers to use depending on the age group and the curriculum they teach. There are lessons to teach math concepts, teach about different cultures and the different landscapes that people live in, teach coding, chemistry, and much more. 

  • Minecraft has an amazing Help Center. There are lots of tutorials to learn how to use the resources, how to purchase it, game features, and a FAQ. 

See Accommodations Page and Charts on the site in the Teacher Resources. 

Directions for this activity:

  1. Have all the students open up their devices to Minecraft and show them how to create a world.
  2. Talk about the different modes and have them start with survival.
  3. Show students the tutorial video, pausing as each new concept comes and have them try.
  4. Share with students your completed Microcraft world example.
  5. Have students explore Minecraft by building a house out of materials that are around them and with the teacher and other students.

Different options for assessing the students:

  • Observations
  • Check for understanding
  • It would be best to have students take a screenshot of their finished house. After completing students can upload their completed project onto a Classroom assignment for the teacher to see.

MITECS: Michigan adopted the "ISTE Standards for Students" called MITECS (Michigan Integrated Technology Competencies for Students) in 2018.

Empowered Learner
1d. Students understand the fundamental concepts of technology operations, demonstrate the ability to choose, use and troubleshoot current technologies and are able to transfer their knowledge to explore emerging technologies.

Creative Communicator
6a. Students choose the appropriate platforms and tools for meeting the desired objectives of their creation or communication.
6b. Students create original works or responsibly repurpose or remix digital resources into new creations.
6c. Students communicate complex ideas clearly and effectively by creating or using a variety of digital objects such as visualizations, models or simulations.
6d. Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.

Device: PC, Chromebook, Mac, iPad 

Browser: Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Edge, ALL

App, Extension, or Add-on:

Hour of Code Minecraft

Microsoft Beginner's Guide to Minecraft

Microsoft Get Started Page

Minecraft Education Version

Minecraft Help Center



There are free games on the Marketplace in the app that have free content related to some topics (i.e.; An model of an eye if you are studying the parts of the eye in anatomy.)

Depending on the chosen topic, students may build models of chosen historical monuments or a civilization. (i.e.; A ziggurat if you are studying the ancient Sumerians.)

This task card was created by Andrew Tomashewsky, Carrollton Public Schools, October 2020