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Mrs. Clifton from Munford AL is requesting Lab Equipment through DonorsChoose, the #1 classroom funding site for teachers.

Breaking Into Education

My students need combination locks (number and letter), directional locks, lock hasps, black light flashlights and small storage boxes to solve investigative "Break In" projects. In these projects, students will sort through a variety of data.

  • $268 goal

Hooray! This project is fully funded

Hooray! This project is fully funded

My Students

I am a fourth grade teacher in rural Alabama. I teach 25 students with a variety of backgrounds. I am a collaborative teacher in a self-contained classroom.

Over half of my class has a Specialized Learning Plan.

We are a Title 1 school, meaning the majority of my students are on free or reduced lunch. Despite these challenges, we have a fun and interactive classroom full of individualized learning opportunities.

I am also a Science trainer with the Alabama Science, Math, and Technology Initiative. This means that my students have extra opportunities to learn Science through hands on resources. In addition, we have a STEAM Lab that helps us incorporate hands-on experiences in other subject areas as well!

My Project

Students will use these materials to solve mysteries in education. Using the breakout edu website, students can solve a variety of investigations in different subject areas.

When students solve investigations using break in/out they are reading through texts, applying content knowledge, and working collaboratively toward a common goals.

To create a break out box: you need a box that locks, a hasp, and at least 3 locks. The 3 locks are attached to the hasp and connected to each boxes. The students solve clues or Math problems to open each lock. The box itself will house another mystery or a prize. Then inside of the box will be something related to the lesson. These materials together make a challenge box. They are also known as "break out" boxes.

The teacher then prepares investigations to teach specific content. These investigations will help students in ALL content areas. Through these break out boxes, I can make student learning interactive and engaging. For example, if students are studying the Natice American removal act, I can hide a code in a famiy letter from a Native American, a code in the Act (law) itself, and a number code in Latitude or Longtitude for a territory the Natives were removed from. By solving the codes to remove the locks, students will read and analyze historical artifacts.

I learned about Break Out Boxes during a summer training. We complete one on WW1. Each lock was unlocked by solving clues found in letters, telegraphs, and advertisements from WW1. I learned more about the war through completing these challenges (to find the lock codes) than I would have using a paper text or even an online resources. It is the ability to make the lesson collaborative and interactive!

Mrs. Clifton
Grades 3-5
More than half of students from low‑income households

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3 donors3 donors have given to this project.

This project will reach 25 students.

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Where Your Donation Goes

Materials Cost Quantity Total
Wordlock PL-004-BK 5-Dial Combination Padlock, Black • Amazon Business $9.26 5 $46.30
Master Lock Padlock, Set Your Own Speed Dial Combination Lock, 2-1/8 in. Wide, Assorted Colors, 1500iD • Amazon Business $7.98 5 $39.90
Stack-On GMR-13 13-Inch Multi-Purpose Handy Storage Box with Tote Tray, Red • Amazon Business $7.16 5 $35.80
American Lock Lockout Hasp, Vinyl Coated Steel Hasp, 1 in. Jaw Clearance, ALO80 • Amazon Business $4.76 5 $23.80
Lock Combination Padlock Set 4 Digit Number Code for Gym Fence School Locker Outdoor (Black, Pack of 2) • Amazon Business $10.99 2 $21.98
Findway 5 UV Ultra Violet Blacklight 9 LED Flashlight Torch Light Outdoors,Pet Urine Detector for Dog Urine,Pet Stains and Bed Bug Detector,Dog Urine Remover • Amazon Business $11.99 1 $11.99

Materials cost


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Total project cost


Suggested donation to help DonorsChoose reach more classrooms


Total project goal


How we calculate what's needed

Total project goal


2 Donors


Donations toward project cost


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Project Activity

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