As part of the district’s ongoing social emotional learning initiatives, seventh grade students in Marissa LoSardo’s class at Nesaquake Middle School participated in an SEL-based escape room challenge on Jan. 16.
The escape room challenge was run by Beth Bolger, a physical education teacher at the Sayville School District. Ms. Bolger, who has won has New York State Teacher of the Year twice, developed a two-hour SEL escape room challenge that she condensed into a class period for the Nesaquake students.
The seven different stations set up around the gym were designed to teach students different coping skills, positive reinforcement and a way to deal with their emotions. In the “All Tangled Up” station, students were woven together and had to work cooperatively to get untangled. “Shades of Emotion” taught students how to knock out negative thoughts and reinforced filling their brains with positivity.
The goals were to teach the students collaboration, to help them recognize and understand the different types of emotions they experience and how they manifest in their behaviors and moods, and to give them strategies to cope and handle those emotions.