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Fresh Voices

Hello, my name is Katie Schroeder, also known as the daughter of Kristen Schroeder (We’re All a Little Mad Here). Since I’m a big part of her life, to say the least she encouraged me to write a blog post for Fresh Voices. So let’s get started...

Today, I want to tell you tales of a place made of blocks, a place where anything is possible. You know it, you heard it, it annoys your parents, yup, I am talking about Minecraft. Why did I choose Minecraft as my subject for this blog post? Because (number 1) I’m a freaking genius when it comes to Minecraft (I can even hack into it) and (2) because I want to help out the poor kids whose parents won’t let them play it, and to hopefully make those parents be more reasonable about this great game.

So here we have the ...



Have you ever struggled to find the perfect curriculum to teach your kids or to make learning fun? Well, I went through the same problem with my mom until we started to use Minecraft as part of my homeschool. You might be thinking, ‘’how can a game teach my kid(s)?’’ Well, it’s quite easy! I use this curriculum called Do-It-Your-Self Curriculum Fun- Schooling with Minecraft.

minecraft curriculum

Also, you can make your own curriculum work with Minecraft. Anyway, in my curriculum it has drawing, and building. It also has challenges like ‘’Build a fort with only 200 blocks’’ or ‘’Make a castle only out of wool’’ then there is history. For example, if you are reading about the Romans, then you can make a building in Minecraft from Roman history, such as the Colosseum or a Roman Amphitheatre.

Now time for...


If you have been reading my mom’s posts then you should know that (1) I am her youngest child, (2) I have autism, OCD, dyslexia, ADHD, and some more conditions that I don’t even know the names for. I get really angry very quickly and how I deal with it is: Minecraft. I know a girl who has autism just like I do and she uses Minecraft to calm her down.

Now it’s time for REASON 3:

People normally have 3-10 fears. Me, I have 2 (I am totally not bragging). Fear number one is elevators, and fear number two is STORMS. I don’t know why, but I just HATE storms!! They scare me so much and if I see a tiny gray cloud in the sky I start to cry. If I hear a noise in the summer that sounds like thunder, I run to my basement. I can’t even look at a picture of a storm without getting freaked out! If there is a storm coming, all I can do is cry and hide... but since I have started to play Minecraft, I can do semi OK during storms. You see, Minecraft is so fun and interesting, that when I play it, I’m thinking, ‘’Oh, I’m just going to play for a few minutes.’’ HAHAHAHAHA -- that’s all I say when people say I’m just going to play for a few minutes... instead of a few minutes, it’s a few hours. Like, I have played Minecraft before during a storm and I thought I only played for a few minutes, but I actually played for three hours and then the storm was over! It was a win- win.

minecraft image

Reason 4:

I don’t like people. When I see people I get scared. This, folks, is what we call these days, shy. Maybe your kid(s) is (are) shy, too, and they don’t like to talk face-to-face with people. Well, let me tell you a little story. Once upon a time, in a house long, long ago (more like a few years ago), there was a young girl named Katie. She did not like people but she loved to play Minecraft. One day, her friend moved away, but they wanted to keep in touch and play Minecraft together. It seemed like the end, but her friend told her about SERVERS. And they played together and lived hopefully happily ever after!.

If your kid(s) only stays inside and plays videogames (or Minecraft) then make them do servers. Once I started to use servers I made friends all over the world! For example: I have a really good friend who lives in Norway who tries to talk in her language to me and I just stare at her like *what* and I have a friend in Australia who tells me all the time about his pet dingo. Be careful, because some servers might be more for grown-ups, and some are even inappropriate, but most are good and fun and safe. Here is a picture of my two friends and me on a Disney server:

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And last but, of course, not least:


Yes, there are a lot of good reasons to not let your kid play Minecraft, but have you ever thought of just letting your kid(s) try it? Minecraft is a teaching game in disguise. One time my mom was teaching me art and she was just about to talk about how colors were made but for some reason I already knew how they were made. ‘’ Mom,’’ I said, ‘’ I already know. Most colors are made from crushed up flowers or rocks.’’ She stared at me like, ‘’How do you know that?’’ and I said, ‘’Minecraft’’.

And Minecraft doesn’t have to be just about learning; it’s fun to let your kid(s) build what she/he wants. You will be shocked about what they learn about or make! Also, definitely don’t try to find another game like Minecraft because you won’t find one that is better. Minecraft is not just for boys, either. Come on, girls! We don’t always have to play with dolls and watch guys play Minecraft. And NO ONE should say that Minecraft is girly or boyish! It’s for every one...

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Webmaster's note: My son is a computer science student at Christopher Newport University. When he took AP Computer Science in high school, much of what he learned made complete sense to him because of what he had learned playing Minecraft! It's not just a game. It's teaching logic and coding as well!

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Pouches' Community Corner

Smart Beginnings Rappahannock Area Splash EventMassadYMCA

For the past seven years, Smart Beginnings has thrown the Splash Pool Party fundraiser. This summer, the event will be held on June 24, 2018 from 6:30-9:30 pm at the Steve & Cheri Thurston Water Park at the Massad Family YMCA. Tickets range in price from $12 for a single ticket, $20 for couples and $35 for a family/group of four and each ticket also covers a hot dog, bag of chips and a drink.