The activities included in this Escape the Music Room (Unlock the Box) set is highly engaging and a great way to utilize critical thinking (logic) and knowledge of matching song titles and sweets to the characters in Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker. It’s an exciting and fun cooperative learning activity that can be used after seeing the Nutcracker Ballet, after your Nutcracker unit (as a review/reward), during the winter time, or during Music in Our Schools Month! This set is designed so that students work together in four separate teams trying to solve all of the puzzles, worksheets and clues.
The mission for this set asks students to help Clara find her nabbed (stolen) nutcracker in time so her godfather can fix it. A PPT is included with video links for the mission (you need access to either YouTube or SafeShare) OR you can use the paper copies. Once each of the four activities included are solved a different combination code is revealed to “unlock the box.” Hint cards (with rhyming clues) are included for you to help coach/guide your students and learners to success as well as a tracking sheet.
You can determine how many minutes your students have to accomplish the tasks for this mission (based on how long you meet with your class). The mission should be completed anywhere from 30-45 minutes (depending on the age/skill level of your students). I have added 30 and 40 minute countdown timers (as PPT Slideshow) as well as Google Links. To access everything in this file you will need the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader, PowerPoint and a Google account. The skills students will need to know for this version of “Escape the Music Room” include: Activity 1) reading the cell phone “text” message and identify (by shading) the corresponding sweet for that “country’s dancer characters;” Activity 2) solve anagrams (mixed up song titles from The Nutcracker); Activity 3) match Nutcracker characters and dancers in a tri-omino like triangular puzzle; and Activity 4) look at a gallery of Nutcracker images (map style to reveal the directional lock code) and identify the song title (listed in Concert Program style).
✔ specific detailed list/pictures of materials needed
✔ step-by-step prep work with images (such as codes to set on your locks, instrument pictures to place in lockbox, circling certain letters & a word to reveal the final clue via UV flashlight, etc.)
✔ step-by-step directions (with pictures) of how to play
✔ PPT Presentation with video links (YouTube & SafeShare) for The Mission
✔ PPT Presentation with Google links for 40 and 30 minute counters (with audio)
✔ PPT Slideshow (plays automatically when clicked on) for 40 minute countdown timer
✔ PPT Slideshow (plays automatically when clicked on) for 30 minute countdown timer
✔ Activity 1= reading the cell phone “text” message from Nutcracker dancers and identify (by shading) the corresponding sweet for that “country’s dancer characters”
✔ Activity 2 = solve anagrams (mixed up song titles from The Nutcracker)
✔ Activity 3 = match Nutcracker characters and dancers in a tri-omino like triangular puzzle (a “practice version” is also included in case your students have never done anything like this – a great activity to do either the day or week before you try the escape room)
✔ Activity 4 = look at a gallery of Nutcracker images (think map style to reveal the directional lock code) and identify the song title (listed in Concert Program).
✔ hint cards with printed rhyming clues to help your students; different styles and format available
✔ answers for all the worksheets/puzzle activities
✔ signs that say “We Escaped the Music Room” (great for a photo op!)
✔ color and B&W options
✔ brag tags (in color and B&W) – great to hand out for those classes who successfully complete the mission
✔ 2 versions (2-circle the facial expressions; 1-fill in answers) of a reflection
You can always do this activity without the actual locks -simply have your students show their “code answers” on the worksheets to you before handing them the next task (worksheet). If you want…you can purchase the following additional items (I purchased all of mine from Amazon and each ranged anywhere from $5-10.):
1-toolbox or tacklebox (that locks can be attached to)
1-hasp lock (all of the other locks will be attached to this)
1-5 letter “word” lock
1-4 digit number lock
1-padlock with key
1-UV (ultraviolet) marker to circle letters
1-UV (ultraviolet) flashlight
1- trashcan to “hide” the UV flashlight under or around
1- large enough nutcracker (i.e. wooden nutcracker, inflatable, or Nutcracker M&M dispenser) to “hide” the key under or around (if don’t have one you can use one of the two additional nutcracker printouts instead)
Camera or phone (optional) – to take photos
This is PACKED with items and information to help you be successful and to “lighten your load.”