Mining for Gold Through a Partnership with Microsoft

Lakehead Public Schools students provided with free Minecraft

Office 365 and Minecraft

Lakehead Public Schools students can now have their own version of Minecraft Education Edition for use at home – for free! Through a partnership with Microsoft Canada, the students have exclusive access to download the popular learning game on their school and personal computers. Minecraft Education Edition is an open world game that promotes creativity, problem-solving in an immersive environment where the only limit is your imagination. The program can be downloaded from the Lakehead Public Schools website at

“Minecraft Education Edition is a version of Minecraft that has been designed by teachers, with additions to make it a powerful learning tool in a classroom setting,” says Gino Russo, I.T. and Digital Learning Resource Teacher, Lakehead Public Schools. “Many of our classes are using Minecraft to teach all kinds of skills and subjects from math to foreign languages to science and history.”

Minecraft has a wide array of uses in the classroom including:

  • Mathematics – Using Minecraft to collaboratively build structures using counting, addition, subtraction, multiplication and estimation skills.
    • Science – Using the Chemistry Resource Pack students can discover the building blocks of matter, combine elements into useful compounds and Minecraft items, and conduct amazing experiments with new lessons and a downloadable world.
  • Language – Minecraft and other videos games have been used successfully to boost student writing skills. Through activities like pre-game planning, post-game reflections, student written strategy guides and walkthroughs as well as character biographies, Minecraft provides a host of options for students to be excited about writing.
  • 21st Century Skills – Minecraft: Education Edition helps prepare students for the future workplace, building skills like collaboration, communication, critical thinking and systems thinking. The open learning environment gives students the freedom to experiment, encouraging creative self-expression and problem solving.

In addition to the opportunity to download Minecraft for free, all Lakehead Public Schools students and staff are eligible for free access to Office 365. With this access to Office 365, students and staff are able to download Microsoft Office which includes Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, Skype and OneDrive. Each student and staff can download Microsoft Office to five personal devices including desktop, laptops and tablets. Office 365 is also available for download at