Video games were once thought of as a kids’ hobby that was not productive. Most parents often calling them a waste of time. I remember as a kid, my mom lectured me about the amount of time I was playing video games. Now, video games are becoming more and more accepted as well as more and more educational. Students can even get scholarships to pay for college through video games! Education is starting to become more invested in video games with instruction and it is evident why: they are highly engaging and can be played while teaching students math, science, or engineering skills without them even realizing it. Video games are also very STEM-focused and are becoming more coding-based, teaching computer skills that are now second nature to students. Here are my top five favorite video games that build STEM skills for your students.
Endless Ocean is a video game that is also an underwater marine adventure. The players act in the role of a scuba diver that is exploring the sea, interacting with sea creatures and underwater life. The player learns about the lifecycles and habits of the sea creatures all while exploring underwater caves. This is an older game, but it’s still perfect for any teacher or student that wants to bring ocean life to life!
ChemCaper is a pretty new chemistry adventure video game that students can play on their phones. On ChemCaper, the player learns the fundamentals of chemistry including chemical properties, groups of elements, and types of chemical bonding. You can find this game in the Apple Store or Google Play Store.
Minecraft is an incredibly popular game with students from elementary school to high school. This pixel game allows the player to build an item of their choosing, like a bridge or a castle. Not only is the player working on their engineering skills, but they are also doing research on different items and following step-by-step instructions to complete a task. This is an incredibly popular game that I am pretty sure will send your students into an elated mood if you let them know they are playing Minecraft at school for educational purposes.
Civilization is another super popular game that has been around for over thirty years. In this strategy-based video game, the player is creating different worlds and civilizations. This is another example of the player building and engineering without them even knowing it.
Super Mario Maker
This is my personal favorite video game that builds STEM skills. This video game is the classic Mario that we all know and love, but it gives the player a chance to build and create their own adventures in the Mario world. The game provides tutorials to the players to create a world that can challenge and engage the player. There is also a feature that allows the player to share their world with their friends to challenge them to beat the world they created.
Looking for educational video games for your classroom? Check out Bloxels!