Cambridge Public Schools Students and Staff Assemble World’s Largest Puzzle

Cambridge Public Schools Students and Staff Assemble World’s Largest Puzzle
Posted on 05/29/2024
60,000-Piece Puzzle Took 13 Months to Complete

Cambridge Public Schools (CPS) is excited to announce that Cambridge Rindge and Latin School (CRLS) students and staff have completed a jigsaw puzzle with 60,000 pieces and measuring 29 feet long. The puzzle, which was purchased by the high school library, took approximately 13 months to complete.

“I absolutely love jigsaw puzzles and how they invite people to work together,” says CRLS library teacher Emily Houston. “I just thought that a community puzzle would be a lovely way for the CRLS community to collaborate on something purely for fun. The project has also reminded our students and staff that the library is so much more than just a place for books and research. It’s also a space for relaxing, socializing, tinkering, learning playfully, and experiencing joy.”

CRLS library teacher Emily Houston, who spearheaded the monumental project, invited staff to sign up if they wanted their students to assemble one of the 1,000-piece sections of the puzzle. As soon as a class completed a puzzle section, they were offered another section to work on, with several classes piecing together four or five sections over the 13 months.

"My biggest puzzle fan was an exchange student who has gone back to Germany,” said math teacher Alison Kellie. “She suffered from severe anxiety and panic attacks, and would come in and work on the puzzle to help transition out of the panic attack. She was the one who would have used the puzzle to get her started in the morning.”

Students and staff were also encouraged to stop by the library during their lunch break or before or after school to work on one of the puzzles at a designated community puzzle table. Some teachers also encouraged their students to help during scheduled class visits to the library.

The last of the sixty 1,000-piece puzzles was completed in late April 2024. The puzzle will be on display in the CRLS Library from May 29 through May 31.

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