Fedsie's Teaching Blog

Sharing teaching ideas, experiences and resources.

Model high school in Minecraft

I’ve set out on a journey to reconstruct a scaled model of Gunnedah High School in Minecraft (MCedu). I want to set the foundations for a group build at school to get the students to reconstruct the school and then get them to help create a Quest that year 6 students from feeder primary schools can undertake as part of the transition to high school program. Hopefully I can get this project completed over the next month or so. I will document the process with images and videos (that the students can also make) and blog it here.

The first building I designed and constructed (from memory out of my head) was C-block. It was built on flat land and all on its own.


First building constructed was C-block

Here is a tour of the building that I recorded.

My next goal was to work out the best way to lay down the plans for the whole school grounds within Minecraft. I collected resources (diagrams and photos) that I could use as reference.



Aerial photo of GHS

Aerial photo of GHS

Scaled Plans of GHS

Scaled Plans of GHS

I then investigated whether there was any sort of free application out there that could help me to convert and place the ground plans within Minecraft. I discovered a free open source application called Minecraft Structure Planner.

I’ve been experimenting with the MC Structure Planner application and have loaded and converted the school’s ground plans into pixel art. The image is essentially pixelated with MC blocks.

MC Structure Planner

MC Structure Planner

The next trick was to work out how to get the plans into Minecraft. Thanks to the assistance of EduElfie who advised me that I could do this within MinecraftEdu because it has an inbuilt WorldEdit.

So I had a go and was able to successfully load the ground plans into my MinecraftEdu server.

My next goal is to see if I can transfer the building that I created (in regular Minecraft) into the MinecraftEdu using WorldEdit…

The Massive Move

Great, I’ve worked out how to relocate my original building (C-block) that I constructed in regular Minecraft into the world I created in MinecraftEdu.

C-block pasted

C-block pasted

I firstly had to zip up the Gunnedah High School world located in the ‘saves’ folder of regular Minecraft, and then copy, paste and unzip it into the ‘savedworlds’ folder in the MinecraftEdu server (using the following path: AppData/roaming/minecraftedu/servertool/worlds/savedworlds).

I’ve documented in the following videos how I selected the C-block building, saved it as a schematic file and then loaded and pasted it into the MCedu server world.

Selecting the building

Relevant WorldEdit commands:

  • Type //wand to get the wand (but I found that you need to have the ‘stick’ in your hand)
  • Left click a block to select position 1
  • Right click another block to select position 2
  • Type //expand <amount> [direction] to make the selection larger

Saving the selection as a schematic file

Relevant WorldEdit commands:

  • Type //copy to copy the region (selection) to the clipboard
  • Type //schematic save <name> to save the named schematic to schematics folder in the MCedu server

Locating schematic files in the MCedu server

I thought it might be useful to know where the schematic files are located in the MCedu server. This will be useful when you want to place other schematic files there created, for example, using the Minecraft Structure Planner application.

Loading and pasting schematics

The final step was to load and paste the schematic in the right location on the school ground plans.

Relevant WorldEdit commands:

  • Type //schematic load <name> to load the named schematic to the clipboard
  • Type //paste to paste the contents of the clipboard (it will paste the contents relative to your location when they were copied)
  • Type //rotate <degrees> to rotate the contents of the clipboard by the required degrees
  • Type //undo to undo

4 Responses to Model high school in Minecraft

  1. Viviene Tuckerman says:

    Fantastic! It will make it heaps easier to construct the school with that map you have uploaded. Minecraft Structure builder looks worthy of investigation when I get a chance. You have been hard at work. So clever! Congrats 🙂
    Hoping you will pass on your expertise!


  2. Jonesy says:

    This looks awesome. I was thinking about a similar build for our transition so I’ll definitely watch your progress with interest. Good luck! – Jonesy

  3. Simon says:

    A great post lots of cool ideas that will help the students at Killara do the same -we have made good progress with ‘e’ block with working lights , bubblers etc

  4. Maria says:

    THANK you so MUCH for an xcellent post. I’m so glad this led me to your wonderful blog!
    I’ve just supported a wonderful first-ever Minecraft project in a Year 3 classroom (http://popculturegrapevine.wordpress.com/2013/10/08/mad-about-minecraft/) and I’m already looking forward to the next. The kids wanted to build a scale model of their school in a flat world as a maths investigation… not sure if I should share your clever strategy with them now, or just wait until it all goes pear-shaped and they need cheering up!

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