Have you been wanting to try a digital escape room with your students but are feeling unsure of where to begin? In this post I’ll be going over what a digital escape room is, the benefits of using them, and an awesome FREEBIE to get you started.
First off, what exactly is a digital escape room?
A digital escape room is a series of problems and puzzles that students must complete in order to “escape” or “break out” of a particular situation. They’re typically centered around a specific theme (i.e. escape the dinosaurs, escape the pirates, etc.) and a specific learning concept or skill. Digital escape rooms can be completed in teams of around 2-4 students or as an independent activity. The tasks are more complex than traditional assignments/worksheets and require keys and codes rather than simply answering questions. Digital escape rooms differ from regular escape rooms in that no physical locks or paper are required and everything is done online.
It’s no surprise that the escape room trend has made its way into the classroom; teachers and students alike LOVE using them. Here are some benefits of using a digital escape room as opposed to a traditional assignment or worksheet.
-The engagement factor is THROUGH THE ROOF—students will literally beg to do more because they’re having so much fun that it doesn’t “feel” like learning. Kids are living in a digital world and we must keep up with their learning preferences/needs. Plus, a little friendly competition is a great way to motivate students to work through the challenges.
-Digital escape rooms foster collaboration and communication skills when students are grouped into teams. The teacher acts as a facilitator while students get to take charge of how they approach the challenges together.
-Students are required to use higher-level critical thinking and problem-solving skills. They must also pay close attention to details and directions.
-Very little prep/setup is required on the part of the teacher. There are no physical locks, copies to be made or laminating to be cut. Even the grading is done automatically since students must complete each challenge correctly before moving on to the next one.
-Digital escape rooms can be used both in the classroom and during remote/distance learning.
-Digital escape rooms are an easy way to incorporate technology learning standards.
So are you ready to try a digital escape room with your students for FREE?! Click the image below to download my “Save The Ice Cream Shop” escape.
This freebie follows the same format as my other digital escape rooms
for third and fourth grade. It is hosted on Google Sites so you will need to check the link before assigning it to your students in case your district blocks Google Sites from outside networks. If you do find that it is blocked, you can contact your school’s tech department with the link to the escape to see if they can lift the restrictions for this particular site.
In this PDF download you will also find teacher directions and answers/codes to all of the activities. If this will be your students’ first time completing a digital escape room, it may be helpful to read the intro story together and explain how they will get from one activity to the next.
Students will type the codes for each activity into the “Lock Form” (shown below). The codes need to be entered in order and each one must be correct in order to move on to the next.
Once the final code is entered correctly, students will get a congratulatory message letting them know they successfully escaped as well as a link to a certificate. This can serve as proof that they completed the escape during distance/remote learning. I also included an optional “distance learning” recording sheet.
I recently began creating digital escape rooms for second grade, which are much simpler and hosted on a single Google Slides file. You can check them out below.