Escape rooms are very popular right now! You can make them at home using simple materials that you have around your house. I have made several at home for my own kids and they always enjoy them so much that I wanted to find a way to do a classroom escape room with my students at school.
I knew that I wanted to create a classroom escape room, but I wanted it to be simple to set up and one that all children could work together to complete.
There are many ways that you could use this classroom escape room and I hope that it gives you ideas for how you could use it in your classroom or homeschool.
I will use this classroom escape room again this year because it also works well if you are socially distancing. Children can work together, but from their individual desks to solve the puzzles.
The other great thing about escape rooms is that they teach kids about problem solving and working together.
This classroom escape room can be used for any subject in any grade! I used it with my students on our 100th day of school as a way to celebrate the first or last day of school. Although I created this for my classroom, you could easily use it at home.
Make sure to always supervise children when doing escape rooms. Use puzzles that are age appropriate, safe and placed in a location that is safe for the children doing the escape room.
How to Set Up Your Classroom Escape Room
I like to start every escape room with a note on the door. Kids get excited about the escape room before even entering the room. (Printables available through Hands-On Teaching Ideas – link at bottom).
This would even be fun to post at school to have kids wonder and guess what the classroom escape room is and what it is going to look like.
Since I did this escape room at school, I wanted to make sure that it involved lots of learning. For this classroom escape room, our focus was on math, but it can easily be used for any subject.
When I did this escape room, one of my goals was to get my students up and moving. Part of solving the puzzles was moving around outside the school to find the different keys.
You can do what works for you and your students as far as moving around.
When students entered our classroom, they found a colourful box locked up and sitting on a stool in the middle of the room. Right away there was a lot of talk and excitement about what everyone thought may be in the box and how they were going to get it out.
On the board, I posted a few clues showing numbers and locations:
Classroom Escape Room – The Steps
I started by giving everyone their own white board and marker. I wanted to keep the prep to a minimum for this escape room and make sure that I could use many times throughout the year.
In math, we were ready to do a review of the materials that we were working on. So each clue for the room was a different math problem.
I started by putting a challenging math problem up on the board. We discussed the problem together and then children set to work!
They had to solve the problem to get their first clue/key. Once everyone had an answer for the problem we worked though solving the problem together to make sure we were right.
Next, we checked our answer with the numbers/clues on the board and matched it to the outdoor location. (I.e. If the answer to the math problem is 33, the clue on the board told us that 33 lead us to the “Entry Door”.)
Once we had the answer, we searched the outdoor location for the key.
(If you would rather stay inside, you can simply solve the problem, match the answer to the key and open a lock – all inside the classroom.)
Once the key was found, we came back into the classroom and unlocked the strap on the box that the key opened. We then started on our next question.
Step by step we solved each of the questions and took one strap off at a time. You can include as many clues/straps as you want and simply work through each question one at a time.
Once we got our final key, it was time to open our box! Since we were celebrating our 100th day of school, the box was filled with a few treats and games that filled our day.
This classroom escape room is an easy was to turn an ordinary class into a very exciting lesson!
Just for fun, I like to give children a certificate for completing their escape room. It is an easy way to make the adventure extra special and a great conversation starter when children get home to tell their families about their day. (Link to printables below.)
Although this classroom escape room is focused on math, you can use it with any subject. It is a great way to review material in a fun, hands-on way. Whatever subject you want to focus on, create a series of questions for children to solve.
I have even used this classroom escape room as a centre and for a review of a novel we read.
Literacy Based Escape Room Ideas
For a literacy activity, and novel review, all children started with white boards and markers and I gave them questions about our book. Children worked hard to answer the questions!
Each review question lead us to a key. Each key opened our box one step at a time.
My class was engaged and excited during our classroom escape room. Many children didn’t realize that it was a learning period for the day!
They were so focused and determined on solving the clues and were very happy and excited to do math/language.
If you are interested in certificates to add a little extra excitement to your escape room in class, you can print FREE escape room certificates from me.
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For more printables and certificates and clues available through Hands-On Teaching Ideas, click link below to view.
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Print and Go Escape Room for Kids
If you are looking for a low prep escape room that you can do today, I have created print and go escape rooms. Print the pages, spend a few minutes setting up and go!
More Escape Room Ideas and Hands-On Activities
For more ideas to create a escape room at home or at school, I have created a list of 40 of my favourite DIY escape room clues. Click the link/image below for more ideas! You will also find some of my most popular hands-on activities for kids.