Small Town Times December Newsletter - Page 21

In the first quarter this year, ninth graders were getting ready to read a novel in Mr. Moser’s English class: Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella. However, this was going to require some background knowledge about the fixing of the 1919 World Series by the so-called Black Sox of Chicago. Rather than read an article or watch a video about this historical event, the ninth graders instead completed a Breakout Box game. A Breakout Box is a collaborative project where students work together to solve puzzles, find information, apply it, and ultimately unlock a series of locks to reveal a prize. It requires teamwork, outside-the-box thinking, and a great deal of patience. Throughout this breakout game, ninth graders pored over photos, statistics, first-hand accounts, and word puzzles to gradually uncover more knowledge and unlock more boxes. By the time everything was done -- with just 10 seconds left to spare on the timer -- the final box was unlocked, and the class won their prizes: baseball cookies and a better understanding of the Black Sox Scandal.