12th October – CBC Kids news takeover on Minecraft and Halloween is going to look different this year – An update from the kids, teen and family sector
CBC Kids news takeover on Minecraft
On October 10th, CBC Kids News hosted a live back-to-school check-in in Minecraft. A devoted Minecraft fan, Lulia Rus, was the lead builder of this event. As a teen herself, she helped Minecraft developers get to the crux of how kids are feeling about the current pandemic and returning to school. The event was to get kids to build new arenas in the game, while also being able to communicate and express how they are feeling about the current climate. With the idea of “no-touch trick or treating” one of the zones challenged kids to make a working, pandemic-safe Halloween candy dispenser. There was even a virtual parkour course called Race for the vaccine. Two YouTubers, Elijah Sandiford and Geminitay, hosted the event as avatars, broadening appeal.
Is this an innovative addition to gaming? Increasing the likelihood of kids listening to and understanding important news stories in the world?
Or is there a time and a place for news? Is this increasing the ever-pervading news stream into the little pleasures of life?
Halloween is not cancelled, just different
UNICEF have come up with a virtual way of trick-or-treating but not for sweets, instead for UNICEF donations (I don’t mean to sound disappointed there). It all starts with signing up at the trick or treat for UNICEF page, either as an individual, a family, a classroom or another group who wants to fundraise and celebrate the holiday together. Each fundraising link can be shared via social media or shared privately with family and friends. Children have the power to choose how they want to spend the money e.g. immunisations, masks, so they get to really see the impact of their charity. Covid has shed light on the virtual alternatives to holiday traditions, some with extra community, moral and educational benefits than before.