If you ask your students what they did over the weekend, or how they spent their birthday, it’s likely that you’ll hear at least one mention going to an escape room! In recent years, escape rooms have been growing in popularity around the world. So why is everyone so excited about escape rooms? Well the answer is simple – because we love to play games and solve puzzles! Escape rooms take that to the next level, allowing us to fully immerse ourselves in a game-like world, full of intrigue and gamified challenges.

Great. Now we know why people love escape rooms, but what does that have to do with education? As an educator, you’re probably always trying to keep up-to-date with what your students’ interests are and find ways to incorporate them into your lessons. Well in the case of escape rooms, don’t worry! Milton Education has got you covered! Let’s take a look at why escape rooms are a powerful tool and how to use them in the English classroom. At the end of this post you’ll also find a free escape room experience ready to download and use in your English classroom straight away.

The power of escape rooms in the classroom

Escape rooms, in their traditional form, are physical adventure games where players solve a series of puzzles and riddles to complete objectives within a set time limit. In the context of education, these rooms become a metaphorical space where students work collaboratively to unlock language proficiency and problem-solving skills. Here are some reasons why escape rooms make excellent tools for ESL classrooms.

1. They engage students in active learning

Escape rooms encourage students to actively participate in their own learning process. They are no longer passive recipients of information but are actively engaged in deciphering clues, solving puzzles and collaborating with peers.

2. They offter natural language immersion

By creating escape room scenarios with language-based challenges, students are immersed in the target language. This immersion helps reinforce vocabulary, grammar and communication skills in a practical and memorable way.

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3. They encourage critical thinking

Escape rooms require critical thinking and creative problem-solving skills. Students must analyse information, make connections and think outside the box to solve the puzzles presented to them.

4. They get students collaborating

Effective communication and teamwork are essential in escape rooms. ESL students not only practise language skills but also develop social and interpersonal skills as they work together towards a common goal.

5. They’re fun!

The excitement and challenge of escape rooms naturally capture students’ attention and maintain their motivation throughout the lesson. This heightened engagement can lead to a deeper understanding and retention of the material.

Escape rooms offer ESL teachers a dynamic and engaging tool to enhance language learning and critical thinking skills in their classrooms. By creating immersive scenarios that require students to solve language-based puzzles and work collaboratively, educators can foster a deeper understanding of the target language while keeping students motivated and excited about learning.

A Milton escape room experience

Creating escape rooms to use in the ESL classroom requires careful planning and consideration. To get you started, download our free escape room lesson plan which includes everything you need for running an escape room experience in your English classroom. The download includes detailed teachers notes for how to run the session.

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When you sign up to the Milton English Teachers community, you gain access to our free escape room and all other free resources as well!

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