22 March 2018, Denmark – Using a newly launched scenario-based learning game, pre-teens can try their hand at building a better world in the classroom — one based on a deeper understanding of the ways in which forests and trees can make our cities greener, healthier and happier places to live.
The game, Build your city forest: Create a greener, healthier and happier world, was developed in collaboration with the Danish-based educational gaming company, Build A World EDU (BAW) and a free version has been launched for use in classrooms as part of FAO’s celebrations to mark the International Day of Forests. BAW develops scenario-based learning games that challenge students to solve real-world problems while developing 21st century learning skills.
Designed by teachers for teachers, BAW’s educational tools are based on the ‘building with blocks’ games popularized by Lego and made virtual by Minecraft. In block games, worlds are made with building blocks that take the form and colours of real-world materials and shapes. Teachers run scenarios in a week long program in this virtual world that challenges students to work in teams to solve problems together, think critically, pool knowledge, apply their imaginations, and experiment.
“Teaching children about the many benefits of trees and forests, particularly in cities, is critical,” said FAO’s Assistant Director-General of Forestry, Hiroto Mitsugi. “This learning game will raise awareness among today’s children of the sustainable use and conservation of forests and will encourage the young adults of tomorrow to make responsible decisions about the environment, an essential step to safeguarding natural resources for future generations.”
Schools interested can download a free version of the game at the following link: http://www.fao.org/international-day-of-forests/for-kids/build-a-world