Hack a Day blog post 1
My goal with this project is to be able to create an escape room experience for several different populations of elementary school students. I have identified some needs for the project to be successful as well as some major challenge/obstacles.
The five areas that I will need to focus on during this project are:
Structures - The actual construction and design of the puzzles, locks, boxes and how they interact
Curriculum Links - The curriculum focus in the puzzles or in the way that ‘codes and keys’ are discovered and used during the puzzles.
Portability- The ability in which the escape room can be packed into a tub and then unloaded and set up in a space. (This concern is a subset of the Structure issue)
Adaptability - How easily a puzzle can have its solution, or the pieces that provide the solution, replaced with material that is curricularly appropriate for the different population of students that will use the escape room.
Story - The theme of the escape room (This is a subset of the adaptability concern and is largely a creative excerise. As such, this will not this will not likely be a major focus of this project during this initial phase.
Given the above as the elements that I need to be aware of, it is going to be necessary for me to prioritize what is important. Is the ‘coolness’ of the puzzle going to be the primary focus, or is a student’s knowledge of the curriculum going to be the key to opening certain locks? Additionally how baked into the puzzle will the curriculum be? How far away from curriculum can I move before the experience is no longer valid as an in school activity? Yes it could be used as a reward for students, and the benefits of critical thinking, group dynamics, leadership, and abstract thought are obvious (especially for the AG student) but where is the line between relevant / significant and fun.