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Cover Story: Playdate
6/15/15 | The New Yorker

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Digital Games Promise to Improve Math Skills
6/16/15 | Education Next


ednext-june15-newyorker-coverThe cover of this week’s New Yorker shows two girls playing Minecraft on a playdate and in an article inside, Chris Ware describes what playing Minecraft looks like to a parent of a 10-year-old girl:

Clara has spent hours, days, weeks of the past two years building and making navigable block worlds fuelled from the spun-off fizz of her accreting consciousness: giant ice-cream-layered auditoriums linked to narrow fifty-foot-high hallways over glass-covered lava streams, stairs that descend to underground classrooms, frozen floating wingless airplanes, and my favorite, the tasteful redwood-and-glass “writer’s retreat.” (It has a small pool.) She made a meadow of beds for my wife—a high-school teacher who craves unconsciousness—and a roller coaster to take her there. Though Clara mostly “plays” Minecraft by herself, the game allows her friends to drop into these worlds, too, and I’ve even spent some strange virtual afternoons as a floating block-self, guided by my angelic block-hammer-wielding block-daughter, zipping around a dreamscape that feels, really, less like life and maybe more like death, but in a sweet sort of way. If architecture somehow mirrors the spaces we carve in our memories and make in our minds, then something pretty interesting is going on here.

This week Education Next published an excerpt from Greg Toppo’s book The Game Believes in You: How digital play can make our kids smarter

Mike Petrilli interviewed Greg about his book earlier this spring for the Ed Next book club.

– Education Next

Last updated June 19, 2015