Save the future through TimeCraft

A new Hour of Code lesson

To my brain, coding is not that different from time travel because it seems like it should also be impossible (for now). I don’t get how someone types in some characters, and then they turn into a game? How does that now somehow involve manipulating the very fabric of reality? I still don’t understand it, despite watching the Game team work their magic for a while. Well, until our Editor kindly reminded me that there are articles to write. There was also talk of people going to HR, but that’s just how we joke! 

So imagine my panic surprise when I found out that one of those articles is about coding AND time travel! I may not know what I’m talking about, but I sure am excited!

This year, you will be able to harness the power of code (more like magic if you ask me) to travel back in time in a new Hour of Code lesson: TimeCraft. The best part is that it doesn’t matter whether you have coding experience, you’re a newbie, or you’re completely mystified by it like me! You can code with text if you’re already familiar with Python, or learn computational thinking with block-based coding in MakeCode.

Choose one of many adventures and solve fun puzzles for some of history’s greatest innovators and inventions in science, architecture, music, engineering, and more. Travel back to 1920s New York and find a way to give a trumpet to a kazoo-playing jazz musician. Visit the ancient Zhau Dynasty and redirect pandas away from the construction of the Great Wall of China, enabling its completion. These are just two examples of really cool activities where creativity and coding go hand in hand.  

These adventures will challenge you to come up with your own solutions – there is no single answer for any of the coding puzzles. Coders as young as seven can play TimeCraft, but I have been told that there is no upper age limit to learning to code! This is very reassuring for someone that never managed to learn how Snapchat works. 

Eager to start your journey in time? TimeCraft is available for free in Minecraft: Education Edition. You can download and access the course even if you don’t have a log-in or official license from your school. You can play TimeCraft in your classroom, but if you'd rather learn on your own, in-game hints will help you through the lesson. Aspiring coders in the US will be learning to code in celebration of Computer Science Education Week, (December 6-12), but this lesson will soon be available in 29 languages.  

How can educators and families prepare? 

You can start preparing today by downloading Minecraft: Education Edition, familiarizing yourself with the lesson plan, or reading the educator guide. You can also get started by watching the walkthrough video of the lesson, or taking our one-hour Hour of Code Facilitator Training.

You can check out the Hour of Code lessons from previous years – last year’s lesson on empathy and inclusion can be found here. And of course, there are over 150 hours of computer science curriculum if you’d like to continue your coding journey.

Code is a powerful tool that can create a better future, and with Computer Science Education Week approaching, there’s never been a better time to get started. Start or continue your coding journey with Hour of Code today!

Cristina Anderca
Written By
Cristina Anderca