Teachers around the world are always looking for diverse ways to engage students in their learning. Really creative ways to teach and review content have been applied lately in the classrooms. Some of these creative ways to help students to master the content and develop their skills are the scavenger hunts and the escape rooms
There are many ways to set up a scavenger hunt. Some of the more popular platforms for this are Flipgrid or Genially. Also, we can find many ways to set up challenge-based learning games such as break outs or escape rooms with other tools like OneNote.
In many of these games, the teacher becomes the facilitator of the activity by creating the materials and setting up the game but his/her participation in the actual game is minimum.
To enhance the participation of the teacher in this kind of activities, we have come up with the concept “Teams BreakOut
1. What is a Teams BreakOut?
“Teams BreakOut” is a breakout/escape room that takes place in Microsoft Teams where students need to overcome different challenges to reach the final goal.
2. Why Microsoft Teams?
Microsoft Teams has many good features that allow the teacher to interact live with their students’ progress during the breakout. This involvement from the teacher is key to review the quality of the work or to help them out by becoming part of the game.
3. How to set up my Teams BreakOut?
To set up a Teams BreakOut we will rely on one of the most useful Microsoft Teams features: Private channels.
“Private channels in Microsoft Teams create focused spaces for collaboration within your teams. Only the users on the team who are owners or members of the private channel can access the channel. Anyone, including guests, can be added as a member of a private channel as long as they are already members of the team.”
Every private channel will be a different challenge that students need to complete to be able to access to the next level (next private channel). The use of the private channels allows the teacher to manually move students to the next level, in this way, the teacher can review the work and its quality.
In this picture you can see how a Teams BreakOut is set up:
4. The Challenges
For this “Teams BreakOut” we have set up six challenges. For these challenges we will use different apps and Microsoft Teams features.
You were captured by the Picts in a battle in the north of England. It is time to try to go back home after the Picts captured you during a battle defending the wall of Hadrian.
Follow the steps and the instructions to advance to the next level. After you are done with each challenge, let your teacher know.
Challenge 0 – Find the materials to escape: For this challenge, students need to go to Microsoft Teams assignments. In this tab, they will find an assignment where there is a Minecraft World attached.
After downloading and opening the world, they need to collect varied materials to build the tools they need to escape. They need to document their progress by record their screen using Flipgrid.
Challenge 1 – Escaping from your prison: Students will need to go to the ClassNotebook where they will find an escape room that they need to complete to escape from their prison. Do you want to know how to set up an escape room in OneNote? Check this blogpost from Jenallee.
Challenge 2 – Find a boat: Once students have escaped the prison; they will need to find a boat to seal back to France. For this purpose, they will need to convince the boat owner to lend them the boat. They will find the boat owner in the Challenge 2 private channel in a Microsoft Teams meeting. This boat owner could be a guest dressed up as a merchant or even the teacher.
Challenge 3 – Arrive to France: Students will need to seal the English Channel and get to France. To complete the Challenge number 3 they will need to use Flipgrid to film themselves solving different problems they will find in their journey such as hoist the sails and drive the boat.
Challenge 4 – It is a secret! : It is important that you keep your real identity secretly. For that you need to design new clothes to wear during your journey back to Rome.
Use Microsoft Whiteboard to design your new clothes. Keep in mind the materials people used in that age. Remember to share the picture on this channel.
Challenge 5 – Almost there, boss: You need to find a horse to ride back to Rome. For that you need to sell your old clothes to a merchant in France. You will find the merchant in the Microsoft Teams meeting of this channel.
Challenge 6 – Welcome home, Centurion: You are home, Centurion. Everyone is waiting for you in the main square of Rome waiting for a speech. Write the speech in word and record yourself using Flipgrid. You can find this assignment in Microsoft Teams assignments:
This is just an example of Teams BreakOut. There are many possibilities and activities that a teacher can set up following the setting we have shared.
There are many Microsoft Teams features that can help the teacher to design meaningful activities and challenges for students to complete.