Edutech for Teachers

Cool Tools for the 21st Century Classroom

It’s Time for Some Breakout EDU!

February25

If you haven’t already done so, you really need to join the latest craze that combines logic, problem solving skills and teamwork with an engaging series of challenges, riddles and mysteries in a quest to beat the clock—all in an effort to…..Breakout!

Similar to an Escape Room, a set of real life games where individuals follow clues to solve puzzles in order to get out of a area before time runs out, Breakout EDU is the educational version in which students work collaboratively to solve a series of problems to open a locked box (or a series of them)—or in the case of Digital Breakout EDU, a Google form.

Still not sure what this concept is all about? Then check out this video overview created by Breakout EDU co-founder James Sanders…

As Sanders points out, every classroom needs a Breakout EDU kit. Here’s why this challenging yet fun hands-on approach to learning should be utilized in education…

Be sure to dial up the Breakout EDU site to locate all of the info and resources needed to become a breakout junkie—kits, 250+ games, tutorials, facilitation tools, timers, signs and more! There’s even a place for teachers and students to design and post their own games using a template that is provided.

And remember: Although the official Breakout EDU kits are super cool, educators do not have to purchase them from the site. In fact, there are numerous online resources where users can find, build or purchase equipment to create their own experiences. There are also tons of expert educators on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest who share a wealth of ideas.

Moving Forward with Breakout EDU

Last week I introduced the Breakout EDU concept to the middle school faculty in my district. Following an overview, teachers worked in small groups to experience the concept firsthand. As previously mentioned, there is also a digitized version of Breakout EDU involving the use of Google Sites, locked Google Forms and other web tools to solve various challenges.

Here is the BAMS gang participating in Catch the Bus, their first-ever Breakout EDU digital game…

With time left on the clock, all groups escaped—and they had fun doing so!

If you looking to kickstart Breakout EDU activities in your school, the digital versions are a great place to begin. Check out the site here to locate featured games, a sandbox filled with community-created games and tons of resources to assist you with designing your own game.

Classroom Connection:

The Breakout EDU concept incorporates critical thinking, problem solving, collaboration and inquiry-based learning into the educational setting. It can be used to used to introduce a new lesson, reinforce a concept and/or to bring closure to a lesson taught—all in a meaningful and engaging way. This tool can be integrated into any curricular area, for any grade level.

As co-founder James Sanders said, “On the surface, it is a simple box. But when combined with the power of imagination and creativity, the possibilities are endless.”

It really is time for something different. Get ready to unleash your students’ inner Sherlock Holmes. It’s time to breakout!

On a side note, I had the opportunity to visit an Escape Room while in Hershey, PA last weekend. It was a most excellent adventure, one I will definitely schedule again. It’s a must-have addition for every bucket list!

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Hey, edu-tech gurus!

Looking for some technology integration ideas to enhance your classroom lessons? Then be sure to check out my "Tech Tips" for the latest and greatest Web 2.0 tools, applications and web sites that can be incorporated into activities and/or projects. Although some posts may not be applicable to your content area or grade level, be sure to check back often as I will be varying ideas in order to provide resources across the K-12 curriculum.

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