Lego has long been lauded by architecture geeks as a childhood gateway drug into the world of designing and building. Now, the UK wants to use a similar idea to hook teens on the fun of construction management. The Chartered Institute of Building (CIOB) has developed a four-part construction curriculum played within Minecraft—the wildly popular (and vaguely Lego-like) computer game in which players build things out of blocks.
Named "Craft Your Future," the game asks teams of three to four teens to solve building challenges in the virtual Minecraft city of Newtown. Each lesson is completed within three to six hours and is designed to get the groups to tackle real-world problems in maintenance, restoration, new build, and refurbishment. The tasks are often drawn off of real-world scenarios like reimagining the Battersea Power Station.
"There are 70 million people playing Minecraft and just like Lego it has the capacity to inspire and attract a new wave of construction managers into an ever-increasing digital industry," said Bridget Bartlett, deputy chief executive of the CIOB.