Lesson plans provide a structured lesson plan that takes users through research, creation, sharing and reflection. It begins with driving questions on themes such as citizenship, civil liberties, democracy, and immigration. Students then conduct research using online and digital resources, books, oral histories and other sources, and analyze and discuss that research. They draw from their research to design their own virtual recreations of the sites using Minecraft.
Elementary school (grades 3-5) #1
A two-part lesson about the Japanese American incarceration experience during World War II. In Part 1 of the lesson, students are placed into a Minecraft simulation in which they are forcibly isolated into a fenced off area and then reflect on their experience. In Part 2 of the lesson, students learn about the incarceration of Japanese Americans and use Minecraft to create an art card that they would send to a friend in a camp if they were living during World War II.
Elementary school (grades 3-5) #2
Students read a children’s book about the Japanese American incarceration experience and then use Minecraft to visually display their interpretation of one or more meaningful or important scenes in the book.
Middle school (grades 6-8)
A two-to-four week project in which teams of students work together to create a machinima (short animation) documentary film using Minecraft as a set design and animation tool. The topic of the documentary is about the perseverance and resourcefulness exhibited by Japanese Americans during their World War II incarceration experience.
High school (grades 9-12)
A three-to-four week project in which teams of students work together to create a machinima (short animation) documentary film using Minecraft as a set design and animation tool. The topic of the documentary is how the perseverance and resilience exhibited by Japanese Americans during their World War II incarceration experience personally inspire the students.
A short activity lesson about the Japanese American incarceration experience during World War II. Students learn about how the executive order to remove Japanese Americans from their homes caused immediate hardships. The lesson features a suitcase activity in Minecraft in which students have to make decisions about what personal and household items they would take or leave behind if they were forced to leave their homes in 1942.
Mini Lesson Plans
These short lesson plans designed for classes that only have one or two periods to cover the Japanese American incarceration camps. The first, What’s left behind, focuses on the experience of having to leave home and possessions behind, as the Japanese Americans did as they packed for camp. It includes background research, a short documentary, and a Minecraft activity. The second, Daily life in camp, gives students the chance to explore the everyday experiences of children in camp. This lesson plan includes archival research, background reading, a short documentary, and a lengthier Minecraft build.