North’s First Escape Room


Happy 80th birthday, Batman!

This year, the iconic superhero reached his 80th anniversary since his debut in 1939. As a form of celebration, North High’s GraphiCon will be featuring a Batman-inspired Escape Room, created by the students of Citizens of the World.

Citizens of the World is a senior seminar class that focuses on the discussion of important current issues such as prison reform and abortion rights. An escape room might seem like a pointless filler project to just keep seniors occupied, but the process actually prepares students for real-life situations.

Besides being a lot of fun to make and participate in, escape rooms are a good opportunity to experience the techniques behind starting a business. The students must be aware of what they are responsible for, listen to directions from a boss and make sure they work together in order to be successful.

The activity also ensures that everyone is able to contribute something, whether it be providing artwork for the room decorations or editing a video to explain directions and give a backstory. Additionally, an escape room is a unique and interesting project that will stand out on a student’s portfolio.

You may be surprised that only a handful of students managed to construct such a complex structure like an escape room. Mr. Fontano, the main teacher in leading the production, explained that his class is full of dedicated workers and that everyone’s individual efforts added up to enable the creation. The class also received a lot of time to work on the large project as well as big open areas in the old lecture hall.

A promotional poster for this year’s GraphiCon.

The 30 of us split up into 7 different groups which all had different tasks and job requirements to fulfill the entire make-up of the escape room,” senior Ashley Chaman explained. “Jobs included hints, decorations, waiting room, advertising, music, bulletin board and video editing. Personally, I had the job of hints and riddles, which I felt like it was the most difficult job since it was basically the whole crux of the room.”

Molli Mamiye, another senior, had the task of filming videos and recording audio that would be played to participants. “My group is in charge of the intro video to give the instructions at the beginning of the escape room, the audio clips throughout the room and the final winning or losing videos,” Mamiye said. “For the intro video, I acted as Batgirl so I could help explain the instructions and set the scene.”

Mamiye’s acting role will help to develop the theme of Batman vs. The Riddler where players must try to get through the room as quickly as possible to try and defeat Batman’s enemy.

“I’m one of the students assigned to video making,” senior Eyal Hakimi said. “We will be preparing a number of them for the escape room. Mr. Fontano offered his acting in a skit in his Riddler costume, so you have that to look forward to.”

Think you can make it through the room? Visit the old lecture hall on Tuesday, June 11th to take on the challenge!

Players will be admitted in teams of eight and given 30 minutes to complete the room. Clues can be found through knowledge of science, literature and various other topics to encourage everyone to contribute to the puzzle solving. Mr. Fontano and Mr. Schad agreed that solving the room in time is challenging, but completely doable. They also encouraged students to have fun whether or not they make it to the end of the room.

North’s Spanish teachers attempted the escape room for themselves.
Teachers enjoyed the unique experience of the student-developed escape room.

“I’m looking forward to the opening of the room,” Mr. Schad said. “I am super proud and overjoyed at the efforts of the students so far, and was surprised how well they ended up doing.”

The Escape Room will be available to play on Tuesday, June 11th. There is no fee to pay for playing. During the day, you must schedule a period to participate in the room. After school, however, the room will be open to everyone until 6pm on a first come first served basis. The room is located in the old lecture hall.

“I am super excited for the staff, students, administration and other faculty to come and enjoy the project we all worked hard on!” Chaman said.