By Admin / September 10, 2020

Video gaming brings STEM skills to life

Video games have become quite the pastime. They’re a good way to bring family and friends together for work or competition or just a way to unwind with a good story after a long day. With social distancing, most gaming platforms have seen a huge increase in both demand and the amount of users, but that doesn’t mean you can’t keep your mind fresh!

How Education Went Remote 

Now, video games don’t look like they used to. From giant consoles you needed to put quarters into to play to Candy Crush on our cell phones, coding, programming, and artwork have always been an integral part of video games. However, with open-world and sandbox games, a whole new world has been opened.

Take the students of Bronx High School of Science. When their school closed back in March, students turned to Minecraft in order to re-create their high school (Intelligencer). Not only is the building three floors with unique architecture, but the students also used blueprints of the high school to create the most accurate to-scale version of their school that they could. Each block in the Minecraft game equals one cubic meter, so the students who created the school from the blueprints had to use a lot of math. Re-creating their school enabled them to work together, express some creativity, and also continue to bond with one another over a shared task. 

Level Up Your Coding Skills 

Video games have also opened the door to gamification in a wide variety of ways. If you want to learn a new skill, there’s probably a game for that! Take the game while True: learn() on Nintendo Switch. You take the role of a coder who learns that their cat is a coding genius, and now you must design a cat-to-human speech system. While the premise might seem a bit goofy, the gamified approach to machine learning, data science, coding, problem-solving, and logic simplifies the process of learning these approaches, as most of the time you don’t even realize those are the skills that you’re picking up.

This is just one resource to learn programming-related skills. If you want to learn the languages behind the games, or even web development and design, there are tons of free resources!

  • CodeMonkey teaches you how to use CoffeeScript and HTML5.
  • CSS Diner teaches you how to use CSS.
  • CodeCombat helps you learn Python®, JavaScript, Lua, and more! 

Eventually, you can move from using the languages to control the game to using languages to build your own game. One revolutionizing platform is called Stencyl. Most people are used to games being thousands upon thousands of lines of code, but Stencyl takes all that away and utilizes block-based coding so you can build your own game from scratch or take another game apart piece by piece to see how it works – no coding knowledge required. However, you can always take a peek at the code to see exactly how it is written as you drop a variety of blocks in. It even has integrated scene designers, so feel free to let your artistic side fly! After you finish your game, you can export it to be supported on a number of platforms such as HTML5, iOS, Android, or Flash.  

Find more free coding games to learn code online at Skillcrush.

Creative, playful STEM-based learning is exactly what video games can bring to students. Explore more of the virtual reality benefits that will excite the next generation of STEM innovators: “Video games in the classroom? – Leveling up on workforce skills and “Gaming in the classroom?

Games and gamification are becoming huge parts of classrooms and at-home learning. Are you incorporating any specific activities or games into your classroom or learning methods? Let us know!

For more on coding in the classroom:



TOPICS: IN THE CLASSROOM, BEYOND THE CLASSROOM, Culture, Science, Technology, STEM, Resources, Coding, Authentic Learning, Activities, Future Ready, 21st Century Skills, Hands-on Learning, STEAM, Workforce Development, Virtual Reality


Written by Admin

A few of Pitsco’s cool staffers contributed their knowledge and time to this post. We’re proud to have a great group of developers, writers, managers, builders, and creatives who can help bring the Pitsco Blog to life.