Back to the BreakOut

So, long story short, we have a bit of extra time in our Right-Angle Trigonometry unit, so I mentioned to my team that I would put together a BreakOut for review.  During this time, we have a lot of kids away for various reasons so having something self-paced is helpful.
You can read more about creating BreakOut/EscapeRooms in OneNote on my earlier post here: Escape Room / BreakOut in OneNote – even if you don’t use OneNote in your school, you could do this with a Personal OneNote.  All you have to do is create a view-only Share with your class and they can view it online!  Even on their phones!

I first made a OneNote Notebook and shared it with the other members of my team. I had hoped that they would contribute but only one jumped on board and added some questions — not upset though. There’s a lot of things that happen at my school, so I just lay out breadcrumbs and see who’s hungry enough to follow.
In this Notebook, I created 5 Sections – each section is a “Room” in the EscapeRoom process.  There’s the first Section, which lays out the instructions and gives the first set of questions and then each room after that is locked (via Password), requiring them to answers all the questions (correctly!) to get the password that will let them in.
All-in-all, it took me about 2-3 hours to make the 5-room BreakOut.  And, as always, it was a little too long.  I was also watching a movie at the time, so that time is likely an upper bound.

Room 1: The instructions & the first set of questions.
So my colleague began by following my instructions in my earlier blog post.  He even filled in the password he wanted.
1) Create a table at the top to put the password in (when you’re ready to distribute the OneNote, you’ll delete this).
2) Drop some multiple choice questions on the page, change their answer letters to a pattern that will give you the password and arrange them as needed.

That took care of the first room.  The next rooms I tried to do some different things.
In Room 2, I required them to answer four questions stolen from some textbook in Right Angle Trig and then find the weighted average of those answers to get the password.  Now, they didn’t know what the weighted average was, so they had to go onto the web and find it.

Room 3 – four more stolen questions where they just find the sum of the answers (I can’t always make them do additional work, can I?)
Room 4 – Now, this was my favourite page — and it intimidated them to start.  It looks really challenging but the questions themselves were read-and-answer; there was really little thinking involved.  I re-purposed a trig activity page … it was a LONG code and a number of students did go astray but even they acknowledged the other pages were better review.

Room 5 – Another re-purposed activity, and it was really popular with a sub-set of students who actively coloured the design.

So now that everything was in place, I copied all of the passwords and put them in a Microsoft Teams message to my Grade 10 team (so we wouldn’t forget them!) and then went back in and got rid of the passwords from the pages themselves.  Then, in OneNote2016, I went to FILE–>EXPORT and exported it as a OneNote package and put it in my OneDrive.  I created a View-only Sharing Link and give the link to all my students in their ClassNotebook.  They click, it opened the package in their OneNote program and they were good to go.
If you don’t have OneNote2016 or don’t want to do it this way, you could just create a View-Only sharing link to your BreakOut OneNote and give the students that.  It would work just as well, and to be honest, I’m trying to think of an argument for not doing it that way 🙂
I would do this again. I liked the idea of adding additional mathematics onto the problems and re-purposing existing activities worked out really well.  The first BreakOut was mostly multiple choice  questions and I think adding in longer solution problems was a more effective review and more interesting BreakOut.
And I’m always looking for evidence that these are effective and engaging.  Effective is hard to tease out — they’re definitely doing problems, talking about the content, making errors and fixing them, exploring new content (weighted average) — and almost no one was off-task the entire hour.

If you’d like, the file is here: OneNote Package for Breakout

Cal Armstrong
Cal Armstrong
Articles: 223

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