Minecraft students are connected #catalystproject – Launceston…how can we keep them engaged?

On Friday I went to a forum for #catalystproject – Launceston. The reason I got an invite to this was due to having a well connected student, and in this case it was @natbott42. For an insight into the forum see the Storify Catalyst Project – Launceston. It is at this point I start to ask questions about how can we ensure that our students are connected and engaged in their learning. We need to provide opportunity for our students to connect with and develop good relationships with people in our community that they can learn from and with in a space that allows for this to occur in a manner that is a level playing field. I say this due to a situation I came across last year. One of my server admins is particularly talented and works tirelessly on the background workings of our server, managing our miners effectively. In a couple of weeks this will be around 120 students, so this is a serious activity on his part. Getting back to my point. Last year I started to see if it was possible for this student to be receive RPL for his learning with regard to a Cert 2 in a VET course. The response stumped me. Essentially, I was told by one learning institution that this would prove problematic for his pathway after high school… Yep, ok, that is as far as I will go with that.

I think the most important thing to consider here is not this being problematic but rather empowering for this student’s future learning pathway… My question is how can we ensure that we support engagement with learning rather than do the opposite? Does our current system support engaging students to be life long learners if there are blockers like this? How can we remove such blockers?

I am hoping that through the forum that I attended with @natbott42 on Friday there will be a way forward for our students. We have incredible young people who need challenge, real life reasons for learning and mentors to support their learning. They need to see value in their learning. Maybe this #catalystproject will provide one avenue for some of the students that I teach 🙂

We need to change the traditional model, we need to find a new one that suits the now and moves with tomorrow.


  1. dskmag says:

    I believe that the ‘system’ is too dumb to recognise “service learning” and too ignorant to recognise when someone moves from ‘playing’ the game to being the play-maker. I’ve taught to Cert IV VET IT, and there is nothing going on in what you are describing that would not be relevant. Having said that, ticking boxes on facile tasks to comply is equally do able. It’s sad we have to run a double set of books – simply because the system is too scared of being abandoned by students simply because the syllabus is totally ignorant. Now how that CD-Rom install skill going?

  2. I meant to respond soon after the forum, but let the time slip a bit… better than never, I suppose!

    It’ll be very interesting to see how students of various ages can be involved in Catalyst. It seems things are moving pretty quickly for the early stage, so assuming all goes well, it will be up to the interested group to define the detailed direction.

    Perhaps it will be a looser situation, with like-minded people coming together and building a community out of events and engagement.

    On the Twitter hashtag I’ve mentioned a couple of possible student events. With a couple of engaged teachers, there could be more developed to interweave the Catalyst activities.

    Groups like https://www.facebook.com/DATTATASMANIA will hopefully be interested. It seems this ‘project’, the building presence AND committed supporters could become truly become a hub in linking the pockets of great activity already out there…?

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