Brittany is an avid "The Sims" fan and has been playing and modding the games since the first "The Sims" title was released in 2000!
The Sims franchise has allowed us to go really in-depth in our Sims lives. We've been able to follow them on vacation, follow them to work, and even follow them to University. But we've never been able to follow our child Sims to school.
After The Sims 4 released the Get to Work expansion pack in 2015, community modder, Zerbu, created his Go to School mod, which used the groundwork for Get to Work's active work lots, but adapted it so that users are able to create their own schools and follow their children there. The mod worked wonderfully, and for the first time, Simmers were able to go to Elementary or High School with their children.
Sadly, the mod became broken after a few patches in the game, and in June 2016, Zerbu announced his retirement from modding, and subsequently announced that he'd no longer be offering support for his broken mods. Go to School was officially broken and left many Simmers sad that they'd no longer be able to follow their children to school.
I'm also a modder within the Sims community (a novice, no doubt), but I started thinking of ways to make Go to School work again. I don't have the skillset to create a mod like Zerbu's, or even the know-how to fix his broken one, but I was able to create a workaround, which uses Get Together's immersive club system.
Update: As of December 2016, Zerbu has fixed and re-released his Go to School mod! You can download the new version on his Tumblr :) I'm still leaving this tutorial up, though- in case you'd prefer to have your own school clubs or don't want to/can't use Zerbu's mod for some reason :)
Things you'll need:
- The Get Together expansion pack
- Neia's More Club's Per Sim Mod
- Zerbu's More Than 8 Club Member's Mod (optional, see update below)
- Telford's Drop Out of School Mod (optional)
- An Elementary or High School lot
Step 1: Find or Create a School Lot
It might be useful to have Zerbu's Get to School mod in your game at first, just so you can easily search for schools in the gallery (some are listed as “elementary school” or “high school” and that venue only shows up with his mod installed). You can still find them without his mod by searching for hashtags/names like “elementary” or “high school.” You can also find some school lots here, on Tumblr :) Place the lot you want anywhere in your town. Ensure that it has age-appropriate learning tools (like the activity desk or science lab for kids, pretty much anything you want for teens...). Turn the lot into a Library and fulfill whatever last lot requirements you need to.
Step 2: Create School Clubs
This really only works if you have a child Sim in your active household. With the child Sim active, create a club for the kids you want to go to your school. If you want, it can be a mixed school with kids or teens. Or just children, or just teens. Whatever you'd like. If your Sim doesn't know a lot of kids, it's not a problem. Using the Club Filter, select age (i.e. “child”) and all the children in the town will pop up.
Go through this process until you have as many children as you'd like in your schools. As I mentioned before, I had 18 kids in my town. I had to create 4 clubs in order to place them all. The More Club Per Sims mod allows you to have up to 9 clubs, so it wasn't an issue to create so many for my school. I named each club “School 1” “...2” and so on, so I don't get them confused.
You can even create a club for teachers if you like. It's best to pick adults in your town who don't have jobs, because if they DO, they might not show up for the school club (especially if your school runs during regular working hours). For easiest management, make a “teacher household” so that they'll be part of your active households and won't get jobs on their own at some point, like townies do. If you have MC Command Center, you can have better control over townie jobs, but it's not necessary.
Update: Zerbu has recently updated his "More than 8 Sims per Club" mod, which will allow you to add up to 1,000 members in one club. This mod will be even better for the purposes of the school club; instead of creating several small clubs, you can now just create one for the students, with as many children as you'd like, and one for the teachers.
You can download Zerbu's mod here, if you'd prefer to use that method.
Step 3: Modify Your Clubs for Your School
Under the Club Activities, list the things you have in your school. Some good activities are: painting, playing an instrument, using the science table, reading, browsing the net, playing chess, playing on the playground equipment, socialising, etc.. You can have all the clubs do all the same activities, or you can vary them so that not all the kids are doing the same thing at the same time. It's up to you :)
I had the Teachers Club do things that kids can't do on the lot, such as cook meals, fix objects, and clean (well, kids can clean, but they need to be learning!). The adults are almost like maids, but that's just how I did things. You can also have them “be friendly” with the kids or whatever you'd like...but I found it most functional if the adults sort of went around and made sure the school was running smoothly.
You can even set up a school uniform using the club menu. Go to the “Modify Club Outfits” option in the Club UI and set up custom uniforms for your school. My school uniforms are navy and blue/black and white, similar to the ones I wore in elementary school in real life :)
Finally, in the Club Hangout menu, select your elementary school as the hangout location. That way, whenever you start a club meeting, your Sims will all show up at school. Once you go to the school lot (in Step 4), you can lock the door so only your clubs have access to it. That'll stop random townies from coming into your school. They might stand outside the door, but eventually, they clear away.
Step 4: Go to School!
Now that you've set up your clubs, you can test them out. Start a gathering and opt to have it at the school. Once you're there, most—if not all—of the kids will show up for school. Now, open the drop-down menu for clubs, and start a gathering for each School Club you have. Yes, you can have multiple gatherings going on at once! In the end, you should have a school full of kids (obviously depending on how many clubs you made/how many kids show up—sometimes, not all Sims will show up to club gatherings, but not all kids show up to school every day, so that's realistic). Of the 18 school kids I had, 15 attended school the times I tested. Pretty good turn out, and I plan on adding more kids soon :)
The neat thing is that since you've set club activities, the other Sims will go around doing the school stuff autonomously. You will also see your clubs rack up points, which can be used later to add more children to your school clubs (since the clubs are initially locked at 6 members). You can also use the points for some cool perks, like giving your Sims a focused moodlet, or skill increases while at school!
Step 5 (Optional): Have Your School Club Replace “Real” School
Telford created a mod that’ll allow your Sims to drop out of school (and get a real job- if they’re teens, but that part is optional). My idea is that my Sim children will learn all they need to learn through my school club, so there’s no need for traditional school. Instead, my Sims get up every morning at 7, head to the school club at 8, increase their skills there until 2:30 pm and then head home.
You don’t HAVE to do it this way, but that’s the way I prefer to do it. If you don’t want to use the drop out mod, you can also use vacation days (either by using a vacation day cheat, or just the ones your Sim normally accrues) and go to the school club on those days. Or you can do the school club after school, or on weekends, or whatever you’d like. It’s totally up to you!
You can download Telford’s mod. The default mod is for teens, but there’s also a version for children. Read the instructions on how the mod works on MTS.
Anyway, that’s all there is to it. I know this method isn’t the exact same as Zerbu’s amazing mod, but it’s the best solution I can think of for now to still get that school experience/gameplay that his mod brought and to still have a school full of kids and “teachers.”
Let me know if you guys try it out and what you think, and feel free to send me any suggestions or ideas you have to make this even better! :D
Credits: All screenshots and pictures are from my gameplay; the exterior school shot is my Oasis Springs Elementary School (available on the gallery), interior school screenshots are from my Windenburg Elementary lot (avaliable on the gallery).
© 2016 Brittany Brown
Rili on February 11, 2020:
Thanks for the awesome idea! I am always looking for new ways to play this amazing game!
typ_dragon on November 21, 2016:
When I get Get Together I'll try this out. I never got to try Zerbu's mod, I only learnt about it today and now it's gone but I think yours is a fun sounding alternative! So, thanks