Smithsonian encourages STEM education through nationwide exhibit


The Smithsonian is teaming up with Microsoft to host a nationwide learning experience on Saturday, Sept. 23.

The experience will incorporate activities from Minecraft: Education Edition to engage students through the immersive storytelling capabilities of online gaming.

Museum Day Live! is an interactive exhibition intended to promote STEM learning in a variety of settings and inspire educators to integrate the technology into their own schools and institutions.

Through the three lesson plans featured at Museum Day Live!, students in elementary, middle and high school will be able to experience historical and scientific environments in an open world concept.

These specific lesson plans expose students to the methodologies of museum curating, an exploration through the observable universe and the process in which buildings are designed and change over time.

“In an era where personalized learning is the goal, the [museum curating project] can be used to help educators find common interests with their students and identify career and curriculum areas to benefit everyone’s learning path,” Ben Kelly, global Minecraft mentor, said in a statement.

Educators and students in 115 countries have used Minecraft: Education Edition as a classroom tool, according to Minecraft. Students and teachers have said, during feedback sessions with the company, that incorporating the technology into their current curricula helped improve student engagement, collaboration and creative exploration.

Visitors to Museum Day Live! will receive a free ticket for themselves and one guest by registering on the event’s website. The Smithsonian also invites educators who are unable to attend the event to register for trial versions of Minecraft: Education Edition and explore its interactive learning experience.