Pupils from Archbishop Temple Church of England High School in Fulwood have joined forces with the Environment Agency, Microsoft and Minecraft: Education Edition to take part in a unique and immersive virtual learning experience.Advertisement
‘Rivercraft’, which launched on Tuesday 5 April, is based on the Environment Agency’s £54.7 million flood defence scheme in Preston and South Ribble.
The scheme will reduce flood risk to 4,700 homes when completed.
Using interactive play through the creation of a Minecraft world, the games will help young people learn about climate change, the environment and flooding along with raising awareness of careers in STEM and civil engineering.
Children and young people across the world will be able to learn more about climate change, the environment, and reducing the impacts of flooding thanks to the new game.
The in-game Preston world is the first activity of its kind that uses Artificial Intelligence to map a region and convert it into an interactive Minecraft map.
This established educational tool is used by millions of educators and students in 112 countries, with hundreds of free lessons and curriculum, teacher trainings, and learning programs.
Read more: Update given on River Ribble flood defences scheme at Broadgate and Penwortham
The Environment Agency and Microsoft will work alongside experts in youth engagement, BlockBuilders, to draw users into three themed games.
Here is a run down of the games:
Game 1: Managing Flooding
This game will focus on building the Preston and South Ribble flood defences.
The player will be tasked with constructing various types of flood prevention measures including natural flood management, walls and embankments as well as flood storage areas and flood gates.
Players will learn about the pros and cons of each approach and their suitability within local communities.
Game 2: Flood Prevention
This game will explore how individual actions can alleviate climate change and how understanding flood risk can reduce the damage to people and property.
Game 3: Our Local Environment
This game will begin on the riverbank where the player will be tasked with conducting an ecological survey using their digital workbook and camera.
The aim of this game will be for the surveyors to spot and record some of our most beloved wildlife species including water voles and otters.
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With a drive to encourage young people into environment based careers, the characters in the game have also been adapted to reflect the diversity of the local project team and the communities the Environment Agency serves.
Andy Brown, Flood Risk Manager for the Environment Agency, said: “This is an amazing opportunity for students and a project we are proud to be a part of.
“Not only will young people learn about a major flooding scheme in the UK, but they will also discover more about climate change, the environment, flooding and the types of roles available for careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
“Introducing the next generation to the brilliant career opportunities we have here at the Environment Agency is key if we are to deliver our vital flood and coastal defence projects.
“This includes the Preston and South Ribble Scheme, which will directly reduce flood risk to 4,700 homes and
“We want to help everyone discover their drive, passion and enthusiasm for the environment and the jobs available within that sector. We can’t wait to see Rivercraft and the Preston world brought to life across the globe.”
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