LITCRAFT uses the popular Minecraft gaming platform to build accurate scale models of authorial maps from classic works of literature. Impact is achieved by re-engaging children (primarily though not exclusively) with literature in a model of positive reinforcement that makes works accessible in entirely new ways, combining the textual and the digital. Reading and writing are integrated with an immersive experience of the literary world. This is achieved through a structured framework that involves a prior reading and vocab task; an in-game activity in the immersive environment that builds on the textual preparation; and a follow-up writing task. This virtuous loop means that the text and the game-world are vitally connected with the experience of each reinforcing the other and strongly helping children in key areas of reading (empathy; reading for pleasure; contextualisation).
LITCRAFT essentially enables an entirely new way of reading that moves across and between the text and its visual/spatial representation. It has the most powerful impact on pedagogy and on individual readers – potentially changing reluctant readers into lifelong readers. But it also has an impact on use of, and numbers of, visitors to libraries and museums and on larger accessibility to and understanding of literary culture and heritage. Our partnership with Minecraft.edu makes our work accessible worldwide.
Working with The British Library to reach out to the regions we also make LITCRAFT accessible through a number of library systems.