Before getting started
Before you start using Classcraft and setting up your account or classes, why not learn more about gamification, games, and Classcraft?
- What is Classcraft?
- The benefits of games
- Common Classcraft and game terms
- Prepare your classroom
- Follow us!
What is Classcraft?
Welcome to Classcraft! We’re so excited to have you join our community of amazing teachers.
First, Classcraft is not a traditional game: students won't be playing out their characters' adventures or exploring a game world.
Classcraft is a gamification toolbox you’ll be using day-to-day to change how you and your students interact together, how your students interact with one another, and how your students perceive your class. Classcraft aims to make school more meaningful but also more fun for everyone involved.
When you speak your students' language, a little bit of fun in the classroom goes a long way!
The benefits of games
While Classcraft is not a game, it relies on principles from the gaming world. Principles like autonomy (being able to make choices), competency (overcoming challenges), and relationships (which add a perceived value to the game) all exist within Classcraft but are adapted to the classroom experience.
Leveraging game principles and applying them to non-game situations, like the classroom, is called gamification. Classcraft uses technology as a way to facilitate classroom management, and it borrows the aesthetic and fundamental appeal of games to engage students.
Sometimes students will have characters, sometimes not. Your class is the game world they evolve in: every action in the classroom may have an effect in Classcraft. For example, if a student behaves well in class, you may reward them with Experience Points, which is what students need to level up in-game!
The gameplay is grounded in real life, which means that the real transformation happens directly in the classroom. Classcraft promotes teamwork, helps students establish positive behavior habits, and enables them to view their progress throughout the year.
Like in a lot of video games, when students earn enough Experience Points to level up, they unlock new powers that give them real privileges in class. You can create powers that you find motivating for your classroom!
Classcraft works as a layer over the regular classroom structure. Students will still learn all their normal lessons, but Classcraft improves how they connect with one another, the teacher, and what they’re learning.
- Innovation in Education — Research Page
- Why Use Gamification in Education?
- 7 ways video games fulfill student needs in education
- Classcraft Research Guides
Common Classcraft and game terms
Adventurer - Characters who don’t have a class yet are all considered adventurers. They don’t have their own powers, but they have access to different gear sets and pets!
Background - Students and teachers can pick the background they wish displayed in the profile view. New random backgrounds unlock every few levels too!
Boss - An especially fierce monster in a video game. Typically, bosses are tests of a player’s learned skills and prowess. In Classcraft, Formative Reviews are also called Boss Battles. They’re quizzes that test student learning and understanding of the course material.
Characters - Starting in the Exploration phase, each student in your class can have a unique character, a virtual person that represents them in the game. Students can even choose their character’s appearance!
Character class or type - Students can choose one of three character classes unlocked in the Collaboration phase: Guardians, Mages, and Healers. Each class has its own unique gear sets, pets, and powers!
Guardians - Guardians are the toughest character class and use their magical shields to protect their friends from dangers.
Healers - Another character class, Healers use their ancient artifacts and bonds with mystical sprites to heal themselves and others.
Mages - The Mages wield the power of the elements and can transfer their Crystals to their allies. They’re very powerful but need to be protected by their teammates!
Class Dashboard - This is the main interface where you’ll see your students, give them points, and open their profiles to use their unique powers. You can learn more about the Class Dashboard here.
Class progression - The class progression guides you through the whole experience, setup steps, and tutorials. Except for when you're in the Introduction, the progress bar will automatically advance as you give Experience Points to your students. To view the expanded class progression view, click on the button on the Class Dashboard progress bar. Learn more about the class progression here.
Class Tools - Tools to gamify your lessons and curriculum, such as the Random Events, the Volume Meter, the Stopwatch, and Formative Reviews. Learn more about the Class Tools here.
Crystals - This resource enables students to use their amazing unique powers! Crystals are represented by a blue symbol () and are obtained when leveling up. Learn more about Crystals and the other ways to earn them here.
Damage - This refers to a loss of Hearts. In games, players lose Hearts when they’re attacked or when they fumble. In Classcraft, the teacher can remove Hearts when a student misbehaves in class or as part of activities with the Class Tools (like the Formative Reviews!) Learn more about Hearts and damage here.
Delayed damage - When damage occurs, you can choose to send it to the delayed damage queue, which does not interrupt the flow of the class to deal with the consequences of a student losing Hearts. You can find the delayed damage in your Activity Center or in the to-dos. Students can see it in their delayed damage queue. In your class settings, you can enable an option to send all damage to the delayed damage queue. Learn more about delayed damage here.
Experience Points - Experience Points are the points collected by students for behaving well and successfully completing Class Tools activities or Quests. When you see a student displaying a behavior you want to promote, give them some Experience Points. When they gain enough Experience Points to fill the purple bar, they’ll level up. Experience Points are represented by the purple bar in the Profile view. There’s no limit to how many Experience Points students can earn. Learn more about Experience Points here.
Fall - What happens when a student loses all their Hearts. This is not a permanent state but a student who falls will need to complete a random pledge and may cause other students on his team to also lose Hearts. Learn more about falling and pledges here.
Game feed - You’ll find all the game activity in your game feed. Whenever students use their powers, gain Experience Points, complete activities, etc. You may also see this information in the Activity Center’s To-Dos and Notifications.
Gamemaster - That’s you, the teacher!
Gear - Clothing, armor, etc. for characters. Students can spend Gold Pieces to unlock outfits, or they can mix and match different types of gear pieces (headgear, shoes, pants, etc.) to create a unique look. Each character class has unique gear sets that they can purchase and equip. Be on the lookout, there may even be seasonal outfits!
Gear sets - New gear sets unlock every few levels. All gear sets have one of each piece (head, shoulder, boots, etc.) Once a student purchases all the pieces of a gear set, they automatically unlock a new pet they can train.
Gold Pieces (GP) - Students earn Gold Pieces automatically by leveling up. If you have a school or Premium license, your students will also earn Gold Pieces when training their pets and you may even give them Gold Pieces when they behave particularly well! With Gold Pieces, students can purchase new gear for their characters or, if you have a school license, purchase items from the School Store.
Guide - If you pick the Quick setup, the Guide is where you'll find all the steps you need to complete, videos for students, and tutorials for you.
Hearts - Previously called Health Points, sometimes called Hit Points. Hearts are a character’s life energy. In games, when a character loses all their Hearts, it’s game over. In Classcraft, when a student loses all their Hearts, they “fall” and commit to a “pledge” that they must complete.
Hearts are represented by hearts (). Students may lose Hearts for misbehaving or during activities with the Class Tools. Students cannot earn more Hearts than the maximum allotted by their character class. Learn more about Hearts here.
Hero Pact - The Hero Pact is a resource that teachers can print out and have students sign to indicate their commitment to playing the game.
Kudos - Kudos are short, uplifting messages students can send to their peers to highlight their actions.
Level - An indicator of a student’s overall progress. The higher a student’s level, the more Experience Points they’ve earned, and thus the more positive behavior they’ve shown in class. Your best students are expected to level up about once a week! Some powers and gear sets are unlocked at higher levels!
Level cap - The number of Experience Points required for students to fill their bar and level up.
Level Track - Accessed by clicking a student’s level in the Profile view, the Level Track displays all the rewards a student can gain and at which level. It’s also unique for each character class!
Level up - What happens when a student gains enough Experience Points to fill their bar and attain a new level in the game. Leveling up is awesome! It rewards students with a Crystal they can spend to activate a special power and Gold Pieces to buy new gear. It also unlocks new gear sets and powers!
Multi-Class - When a student has a single character played in multiple classes (can only happen with a school license), they are considered Multi-Class.
Mystery rewards - Sometimes, students will not be able to view some rewards from their Level Track. You, as a teacher, can always see those. They’re rewards that are locked behind a phase you have yet to reach.
Oron's Lantern - A list of all student pledges committed by a student who fell. When a student fulfills their pledge, you can check them off the list either in the Profile view or in your To-Dos.
Pets - By purchasing whole gear sets, students can unlock pets, which are like magical animal companions, and train them to earn extra Gold Pieces. Once a pet is fully trained, it can be displayed alongside the character in the Profile view.
Phases - Instead of having access to all the features at once, which can be overwhelming, Classcraft guides you throughout the process. When you create a class, you’ll be in the Introduction. Afterward, you’ll progress through phases and can decide which one you’re the most comfortable on. Open your class progression to view the breakdown of features. Learn more about class progression here.
Players - People playing a game. In Classcraft, sometimes that’s what students are called!
Pledge - A random consequence students get when falling. Typically, these are tasks or conditions of the teacher's choosing that students must complete. Examples include writing a Kudos to another student, saying something positive about teammates, and helping out after class.
Powers - Any skill or special ability. In Classcraft, powers grant your students special privileges. To activate one of their powers, a student requires at least one Crystal (although some powers require more). These powers, set by teachers or admins, can be universal, character-specific, game-based, or collaborative. Examples include using notes on an exam, getting to leave the classroom for a few minutes, etc.
Premium - A type of license where teachers and their students have access to more features such as Gold Pieces as a reward, longer Quests, Pets, etc. On the Knowledge Center, features available to Premium and Premium-specific mechanics are indicated with the tag. Learn more about license types on our pricing page.
Quests - In RPGs, quests are missions that players go on to earn gold or progress in the game. In Classcraft, Quests are personalized learning adventures that students complete. Learn more about Quests here.
Quick setup - If you rather not going through the whole Class Progression, select the Quick setup option when creating a class, which enables you to focus on the core steps only.
Random Events - Special, randomized conditions that set the tone for the class at the beginning of the day. Random events can have positive, negative, or silly implications for students, teams, or the entire class. Mostly, they’re meant to be fun! Learn more about Random Events.
Regen/Regeneration - Heart and Crystal regeneration rates refer to how many Crystals and how many Hearts students regain automatically at midnight each day. Regen is unlocked the Mastery phase!
Role-playing game (RPG) - Classcraft is an example of a fantasy role-playing game, or RPG, where players assume the role of a hero adventuring in a fantasy land.
School license - A type of license paid by a teacher’s school or district with which admins, teachers, and students have access to all the features. On the Knowledge Center, school features and school-specific features are indicated with the tag. Learn more about license types on our pricing page.
Shields - In the Proactive mode, powers that prevent students from taking damage (such as Protect) instead grant Shields to the target. One Shield can prevent a student from losing one Heart. They're displayed as Shields icons beside the Hearts bar.
Status - In the Proactive mode, statuses are little icons that appear on the student's profile after a power was used and that changes how certain game elements would work. For example, a lit up lantern beside the term Hearts means that the student will be protected from falling one thanks to a Healer's power.
Prepare your classroom
You can play Classcraft with as little as a single computer and a projector so you can run the game in the background during class. We recommend using either Chrome, Safari, or Edge for best results. You can also use Classcraft on mobile to give points or use tools as you are teaching. You can be logged in to two places at once, such as your desktop computer and your mobile device.
If your students have their own devices, they can log in and use their powers during class. Feel free to set a class rule that students can only use powers at the start or end of the day.
Once you’re up and running, Classcraft should take no more than 5-6 minutes per class hour.
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