Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Read Across America Free Digital Breakout

BreakoutEdu is exploding in classrooms around the world. Based on the breakout rooms popping up in malls, BreakoutEdu is a fun and engaging way for students to review, research and learn. If you haven't heard of it, go check out BreakoutEdu. When you register, free, you'll receive a code so you can access hundreds of breakouts that have been created by teachers at all levels and subjects. There's several Facebook groups for collaboration as well. 

I don't have any boxes or locks, but I do have iPads, Kindles and Chromebooks. So, I took this breakout from the blog Primarily Google and put it into a form to digitize it. Now I have a fun themed breakout my students can work through and access. You can access my digital version here where you'll be asked to make a copy so you'll have your own responses and can change the form in any way to fit your needs.  The one thing you'll need to know for this, which you could also see in the edit side of the form, is that the code for the crossword is reader, so you'll just have to highlight letters in the crossword that could be unscrambled to make that word clue. I laminated a blank puzzle that I had highlighted, so students just compare their completed puzzle to see which letters they need. That was a whole lot easier than highlighting 25 crossword puzzles.   The original crossword for printing and answer key can be found here. Additionally, on the poster, the UV light clue is "The Author".

For the final clue, I have the form set so students have to enter the code in the form and then use it to open the one lock box I have. You can change the directions to fit the lock you have. I had a three digit lock, so I needed three numbers. Information about my lockbox are below. Inside the box, I will place the materials students need to create Cat in the Hat hat headbands. Materials include: 

  • red construction paper
  • hat templates cut out from tagboard for students to trace (Just freehand a wobbly rectangle and cut it out for students to trace, there are some templates online, but I didn't love any of them.)
  • white thin strips of construction paper for the stripes (each student needs 2)
  • white strip that is wider than those above for the head band from large construction paper or butcher paper so that it will wrap around student heads. 
I'll add pictures of the hats to this post after my students make their hats. 

I'm slowly aquiring the parts for a physical/original breakout experience as I think that has a lot of value too. I aquired a toolbox from Walmart that is 16 inches and probably 5 or 6 inches wide and a bit taller than that. You can find it online here. 

Theres several other options. A toolbox with a place for a lock is a great option as they are inexpensive and vary in size. There were some larger options for less money, but I really liked the look of this one and seemed a bit more treasure like. I grabbed this set of 2 padlocks as well for locking the tool box. I just found that the lock boxes I was finding were small and I wanted a bigger option. 

I hope you'll give breakouts a try. I've only done the digital versions, but I think there's a lot of benefit to the tangible locks and boxes, which I hope to aquire over the summer. 

If you give this a go, I'd love to hear how this works with your students!

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