Microsoft: ‘Minecraft: Education Edition’ will be available for teachers as ‘free’ download

In an announcement made via a blog post on Thursday, Microsoft said that the 'Minecraft: Education Edition' will be available as a 'free' download for teachers, when the edition becomes available in beta format beginning May.

The imminent availability of the 'Minecraft: Education Edition' in May marks an apparent effort by Microsoft to expand the popular game Minecraft - which was acquired by Microsoft in 2014 for $2.5 billion - for use by teachers in the classroom.

Sharing details about the 'Minecraft: Education Edition,' Microsoft said in the blog post that the forthcoming edition's beta program will be run by the company with more than 100 schools from 30 countries across the world, enabling the testing of the software in classrooms.

The brief 'Minecraft: Education Edition' beta program, during which schools will offer detailed feedback to Microsoft, an "early access" will be launched by the company is June, to allow all teachers to download the game and try it out. The "early access" program will be available in 11 languages and 41 countries. The "early access" program will continue throughout the summer. During the span of the program, Microsoft will team up with the early adopters, for the purpose of building out lesson plans, sharing learning activity ideas, and creating re-usable projects.