This unit was designed to engage students, initiate inferencing and inquiry.
My co-op teacher and I left clues throughout the classroom, knocked over desks and place random clues in hidden places. The students were told that someone had trashed the classroom and I needed their help in solving the mystery. Students were given the Mystery Unit Handout and were asked to complete it with a partner. Another fun aspect that I brought to this assignment was having the students question myself, my co-op teacher and the principle to find the culprit for the trashed classroom. By doing this, students worked on their inferencing and questioning skills. They were then asked to present their story about what they think happened based on the evidence and questioning.
Students were heavily engaged in this assignment and it was very successful.
Another assignment that I included with this unit was a Newspaper article explaining a mysterious person or place that they were assigned.
The assignment outline and rubric is posted below.
Mysterious People/ Places Research Project
You will be given a mysterious person or place. Your job is to research that person or place and make a newspaper article about it. Your article will include:
- The name of your newspaper (you chose!)
- The title of your article which should include the name of your person or place.
- Where your mysterious place is in the world or where your person lived/lives
- A brief description of your mysterious place or person
- Why does your topic remain a mystery? Why is your person or place mysterious?
Your article must also include a drawing of your mysterious place or person. It must be neatly drawn and coloured.
|Content||Your article contains all of the required information. (name of newspaper, name of article, where your person/place is, brief description, why it remains a mystery)||Your article contains majority of the required information. (It is missing one aspect)||Your article has some of the required information||Your article does not have any of the required information.|
|Effort||Full effort was put into the article. It is detailed and neat. The article was handed in on time.||Some effort was put into the assignment. The article is somewhat detailed and neat.||There is little evidence that effort was put into the assignment. The article is difficult to read at times.||There was not any effort put into this assignment. The article was not handed in on time.|
|Creativity||The article was creative and unique. You thought outside of the box||The article was somewhat unique. There were hints of creativity.||The article had a bit of creativity.||The article lacked a sense of creativity.|
|The article does not have any spelling or grammatical errors||The article contains 1 or 2 errors||The article contains 3 or more errors||The article has so many errors that the article is difficult to interpret.|