Yesterday I took my girls and two of their friends to an escape room. I don’t know if you’ve heard about these or done them but they’re amazing. Although they are universally called “escape rooms,” some don’t actually require you to escape and instead have a goal to meet or a treasure to find. To succeed you must complete the tasks within one hour.
In order to solve the puzzles you need to work together with everyone else in the room. Teamwork will make the difference between success and failure. In many of the rooms I’ve done there has been an opening to a second room that gets revealed partway through the game. In one case, someone had to turn a crank in one room while someone in the other room provided them with instructions. All the rooms I’ve done have been like this in some regard, requiring players to communicate effectively.
This is one of my favorite activities, and it’s no wonder because it involves seeing what is in the room, but sometimes looking at it from a different perspective. The answers are always there, you just have to see them in the right light. It involves a collaboration of effort, everyone bringing their unique knowledge and perceptions together, the whole being worth more than each of the parts.
It involves finding hidden meaning, which if you’ve been reading my blog you might realize is really what I do best. It’s not that I overthink things, but rather that I look for the meaning or lesson in events and situations that others might ignore. Maybe it’s the frustrated, suppressed teacher in me that yearns to get out; but there is so much to learn from this type of game:
1. You will always have more success when working together.
2. If you don’t see the answer it doesn’t mean you’re not looking in the right place, you just might be looking at it the wrong way.
3. If a problem seems too hard, you may need to get some help. Someone else might already have the answer.
4. Speaking louder isn’t always the best fix for a problem communicating.
5. You never know where you might find the next clue.
6. Often the answer seems obvious once you find it.
7. Keep trying new things, you never know what might work.
8. Start now, immediately. Nothing good comes from waiting.
Honestly I love these so much the past 2 years our Halloween party has encompassed these types of puzzles. I come up with the stories, clues and puzzles and the kids work together to find the solution. I can’t wait to get started on the one for this year!
Have you done one? If so, share your experience. I’d love to hear what you thought!
This post is in response to the daily writing prompt Crank