Learning With: ‘You’ve Conquered the Escape Room. But Can You Escape the Lab?’

Learning With: ‘You’ve Conquered the Escape Room. But Can You Escape the Lab?’

3. According to Dr. Kwiat, what makes a good escape room? How does his LabEscape illustrate those qualities?

4. Mr. Chang discovered that his background in physics did not necessarily help him in solving LabEscape. What skills did he find were more valuable?

5. What does Dr. Kwiat hope students gain from their LabEscape experience? How does the story of Erica Phillpott’s 12-year-old daughter demonstrate the success of his goals?

6. Mr. Chang writes:

One puzzle involves extracting a key to open a lock to get to another clue. Dr. Kwiat designed the solution, but was surprised when a participant figured out an alternative way of getting the key.

Then someone figured out a third way, and someone else figured out a fourth way. Eventually, he stopped being surprised. Now, escape room players have come up with 18 different ways of fishing out the key.

Why do you think Dr. Kwiat was initially surprised that participants discovered alternative ways to solve his puzzles? How might this anecdote be a key to understanding the success of escape rooms? How might this insight have beneficial implications for all teachers in designing their curriculum and lesson plans?

Finally, tell us more about what you think:

— What can teachers and students learn from the article and the story of Dr. Kwiat’s escape room? What did you find most interesting or fascinating in the piece?

— What has been your experience with escape rooms? Which was your favorite and why? Have you ever done an escape room in school? If yes, what was the educational purpose and did it fulfill those goals?

— Do you think Dr. Kwiat’s LabEscape is an effective way to encourage students to deepen their interest in science? Would you want to experience LabEscape? Do you think you would be able to escape in time?

— What are your experiences with science? Do you find your science classes to be engaging, challenging or meaningful? Have you ever had a teacher like Dr. Kwiat who is able to make science come alive? What do you think would make your own science classes more engaging and worthwhile? What could your science teachers learn from Dr. Kwiat?

— Do you think all teachers should incorporate escape rooms, or other immersive games, into their classes? Why or why not?