Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Classroom Crime Scene

I am super excited about the lessons on inferring that I taught my 5th graders today!!! It is so much fun when we can do something different that really gets the kids thinking. 

Above is what my 5th graders found when they came to class in the afternoon. I walked them to class and when we reached the door they all started asking questions, most asked if someone had died. LOL! My only instructions before we went in was 'this is a crime scene so you should not touch anything'. This is what they found.

After the students came in they took a few minutes to just look at everything. Then they create two columns on their paper, Clues and Meaning. They then wrote down everything that was out of the ordinary for the area of the crime and what it might mean.

I reminded the students that they had to use their background knowledge of the room and the clues given to understand what happened and why. 

*There was a missing round chair that only two students noticed. Which was funny to me because the chair I removed is their favorite of the comfy chairs. 

The students had tons of ideas of what happened, how and why. After we talked about the scene of the crime and what they inferred we then looked closer at each clue.

When we looked closer we saw the magazine was a gaming magazine and that the receipt was from Game Stop. We also talked about the missing chair that some of the students had not noticed. When we put these final three clues they all known what had happened and why. It was fun to watch the kids put everything together and figure out the crime. Below are the details of our classroom crime. :)

Crime Scene: 
- one of the reading chairs was removed
- chair turned over
- snack and drink left on table (empty Pringles can and a half empty soda)
- open gaming magazine
- crumpled up receipt from Game Stop on floor
- Target bag with extra snack and drink left on another chair

What happened? 
Someone came into the room and ate a snack while reading their gaming magazine. They stole the chair and left behind their extra snacks and the receipt was from Game Stop. We inferred that the person had bought snacks to have while playing games and stole our comfy chair to sit in while playing games.


I have to thank my husband for the crime. I racked my brain and could not figure out what to do, but he came up with the whole crime.


  1. What a great idea! I might have to steal your inferring lesson! :)

    Miss R's Room

    1. Thanks, please do use the lesson! My students loved it!

  2. I really love this! I will definitely use it because it is out of the box and certainly something the kids will enjoy. I'm wondering where I would hide the missing furniture though lol. :)

  3. This is great! I might do this with my students!

  4. Thanks for sharing this idea. I was browsing for an unconventional way to teach inferencing, and this is perfect for my 5th graders! I am a student teacher, so I'm really wanting to go all-out! :) I will be teaching this lesson on Wednesday. I'm so excited! :)

  5. This is great! It will fit in with my mystery theme. Thank You

  6. How would you manage this with a class size of 30?

  7. nice strategy:)tnx for sharing..

  8. I am going to use this as a lesson in my edTPA lesson! Thanks for the great idea.

  9. How did you wrap this up? We did this today and my students LOVED it... but they want closure. Suggestions? Thanks!