Top Pick

Game Making Tools for Schools

By making games, students can show what they know. Game development is fun and challenging, energizing classrooms and getting students thinking in new, exciting ways. These picks are all great options for entry-level game creations, easing kids into building stuff that's a blast to play. 

1.
TinyTap, make and play educational games and interactive lessons Publisher: TinyTap Ltd.
Combination game-creation tool and vast library of pre-created content
Grades Pre-K-5
Type App
Price Free
Platforms Android, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch
Graphite Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
2.
Scratch Visit Website: http://scratch.mit.edu/
Jumpstart future programmers with adaptive sandbox tool
Grades K-12
Type Website
Price Free
Graphite Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
3.
MinecraftEdu Publisher: TeacherGaming LLC
Teacher dashboard and genius tutorial help this sandbox gem sparkle
Grades 1-12
Type Game
Price Paid
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows
Graphite Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
4.
Pixel Press Floors Publisher: Pixel Press Technology
Ingenious game-creation tool translates kids' paper-and-pencil designs
Grades 3-8
Type App
Price Free, Paid
Platforms iPad
Graphite Rating 4
Teacher Rating 5
5.
Kodu Game Lab Publisher: Microsoft
Game programming tool for visual thinkers
Grades 3-12
Type Game
Price Paid
Platforms Windows, Xbox 360
Graphite Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
6.
Minecraft Publisher: Mojang
Spiraling sandbox of adventure and creation gets kids to dig deep
Grades 3-12
Type Game
Price Paid
Platforms Linux, Mac, Windows, Xbox 360
Graphite Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
7.
Gamestar Mechanic Publisher: Institute of Play and E-Line Media
Captivating manga romp teaches kids game design
Grades 4-9
Type Game
Price Free, Free to Try, Paid
Platforms Mac, Windows
Graphite Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
8.
LittleBigPlanet 2 Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Accessible yet deep game creator will dazzle and challenge
Grades 4-12
Type Game
Price Paid
Platforms PS3
Graphite Rating 5
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
9.
Sound Shapes Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Jazzy music game lets kids design levels and create music
Grades 4-12
Type Game
Price Paid
Platforms PS3, PS Vita
Graphite Rating 4
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
10.
GameMaker: Studio Publisher: YoYo Games Ltd.
One of the best creation tools available for aspiring game developers
Grades 5-12
Type Game
Price Free, Paid
Platforms Windows
Graphite Rating 5
Teacher Rating 5
11.
Portal 2 Puzzle Maker Publisher: Valve
Mind-bending level editor for beloved physics game
Grades 7-12
Type Game
Price Paid
Platforms Mac, Windows
Graphite Rating 4
Teacher Rating 5
12.
Stencyl Publisher: Stencyl, LLC
Code-free game development tool helps kids program and publish
Grades 5-12
Type Game
Price Free, Paid
Platforms Mac, Windows
Graphite Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4
13.
Codecademy Visit Website: http://www.codecademy.com
Terrific hands-on coding practice with live feedback
Grades 7-12
Type Website
Price Free
Graphite Rating 5
Teacher Rating 4
14.
Construct 2 Publisher: Scirra
Standout, pro-caliber game dev tool still great for novices
Grades 7-12
Type Game
Price Free, Paid
Platforms Windows
Graphite Rating 5
Teacher Rating Not Yet Rated
15.
Codea Publisher: Two Lives Left
Well-thought-out coding platform for real game programming
Grades 8-12
Type App
Price Paid
Platforms iPad
Graphite Rating 4
Teacher Rating 5
16.
CodeHS Visit Website: http://www.codehs.com/
Computer science curriculum offers great feedback, fun challenges
Grades 9-12
Type Website
Price Free to Try, Paid
Graphite Rating 4
Teacher Rating 4