MYSTERY

GIFTED UNIT

Multi-faceted unit allowing creativity in written expression in forms such as video-plays, fiction, novels, and comic books as students set goals for the study unit.

Week 1

Essential Question:  Why and how  is a mystery developed?  What does it take to be a great detective?

Introduction to Mysteries

  The Black Box Mystery:  students are divided into groups and receive a box containing an unknown object. Their job is to find out as much as they can about the object to support an inference of what it might be.

 Activity:  A mystery person in a mask squirts the teacher with silly string then leaves immediately.  Without discussing anything, students write detailed descriptions of the person, what the person was wearing and  what happened,.

Activity:  What is a Mystery? Thinkquest

                   http://library.thinkquest.org/5109/What_a_Mystery.html

The Detective’s Dictionary- Terms to Know

          http://library.thinkquest.org/J002344/Vocabulary.html

          http://printables.scholastic.com/printables/detail/?id=38979

History of the Mystery Story

http://kids.mysterynet.com/history-kids/

http://www.mysteryguide.com/hist-whodunit.html

http://www.educationworld.com/a_tsl/archives/02-1/lesson036.shtml

Mystery Quote of the Week:

“Mystery is a resource, like coal or gold, and its preservation is a fine thing.”

                        Tim Cahill, Australian Athlete

Author Study:  Eileen Christelow Where’s the Big Bad Wolf?

                           James Howe Bunnicula: A Rabbit Tale of Mystery

Mystery Simulation

     Mystery Festival Week 1

World Mystery of the Week

     The Bermuda Triangle – Caribbean

     Alaska’s Bermuda Triangle

     http://www.unmuseum.org/triangle.htm

     http://adventure.howstuffworks.com/alaska-bermuda-triangle.htm

Georgia Mystery of the Week

     *The Werewolves of Talbot County, Georgia

     www.trueghosttales.com/werewolves (For home viewing only)

Activity:  Thinkquest, The Bermuda Triangle

     http://library.thinkquest.org/3717/index.html

Week 2

Essential Question:  What does it take to be a great detective?  How can readers  be distracted from finding clues within a mystery?

Ingredients  for a Mystery

     Characters

          Eccentric Detective

          An admiring sidekick (foil who chronicles the detective’s accomplishments)

          Well-intentioned, blundering officials

          Suspects,  Witnesses

          A staged ruse to force criminals to reveal themselves

          Conclusion with an explanation

     Setting:  Location

     Plot

          A problem that needs to be solved

          An event that cannot be explained

          A secret

          Something that is lost or missing

          A crime that has been committed

Detective Case Report

     http://printables.scholastic.com/printables/detail/?id=38978

Suspect’s List

     http://printables.scholastic.com/printables/detail/?id=38981

 Recipe for a Mystery

      Beginning: Characters introduced and learn the problem

      Middle:  Characters work to solve mystery by interviewing and gathering clues

                         Clues are often inferenced or given in the story plot

      End:  Characters solve the mystery

The History of Mystery Thinkquest

http://library.thinkquest.org/J002344/History.html

Mystery Quote of the Week: 

“Without mysteries, life would be very dull indeed.  What would be left to strive for if everything were known?” 

                      Charles de Lint, Celtic folk musician and storyteller

Author Study:  Doug Cushman The Mystery of King Karfu (The Casebook of Seymour Sleuth)

Activity:  The Mystery Box

     Teacher brings to class a box that she says tell the most important things about her. 

     Students must guess through questions what the items are in the box.

Mystery Simulation

     Mystery Festival Week 2

World Mystery of the Week

     Lost Atlantis

     http://www.unmuseum.org/atlantis.htm

http://www.mysterypages.com/Atlantis.htm

     Anastasia:  The Mystery of the Lost Romanov

     http://www.crf-usa.org/bill-of-rights-in-action/bria-13-3.html

https://www.georgiastandards.org/_layouts/GeorgiaStandards/Unitbuilder/SearchResults.aspx?viewmode=details&ResourceID=28243

Georgia Mystery of the Week

      The Georgia Mount Builders

     http://ngeorgia.com/history/early.html

Activity:  Thinkquest, The Legend of Atlantis

     http://library.thinkquest.org/25245/

Week 3

Essential Question:  How are the ingredients for a mystery used to lure in the reader?  Why is it  important to be a Mystery Critic?

Ingredients for a Mystery

      Clues:  Hints used  to solve the mystery

     Red Herrings:  Distractions or false clues

     http://printables.scholastic.com/printables/detail/?id=38980

How to Write a Mystery

     Begin with the impact of the crime

     An enigma or apparent impossibility is involved in the solution to the crime

     Detective is never surprised

      The detective must put himself in the criminal’s position to use his intuitive

                powers

     Detective must have an intense ability to concentrate

     The criminal must be indiscernible as the perpetrator of the crime until the end

     The element of fair play:  the reader must have all of the clues the detective has.

Activity:  Anatomy of a History Thinkquest

                 http://library.thinkquest.org/J002344/Anatomy.html

Activity:  Begin to keep a Detective’s Log:  A Graphic Organizer when watching or

                      reading a mystery.

                 http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/hound/tg_log.pdf

Mystery Quote of the Week:

“The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious.  It is the source of all true art and science.”

                      Albert Einstein, Physicist

Author Study:  Gabby Gosling The Top Secret Files of Mother Goose

Mystery Simulation

     Mystery Festival Week 3

World Mystery of the Week

     Roswell

      http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,287643,00.html

     http://skeptoid.com/episodes/4079

Georgia Mystery of the Week

     *UFO Wave of 1973

http://www.mysticaluniverse.com/ufos_aliens/ufosightings/georgia/georgia.html

Activity:  Roswell Thinkquest

     http://library.thinkquest.org/26521/Ufology/roswell.htm

 

Week 4

Essential Question:  Where do Mystery Writers Get Their Ideas?

Ingredients of the Mystery Story

     Recognizing elements of a mystery story

     Evaluating fact vs. opinion, inferencing and drawing logical conclusions

     Knowing how to write your own critique of mystery stories or movies.

     http://42explore.com/mystery.htm

Ingredients for Writing Mystery Stories

     History Frames for a Case  http://www.readingquest.org/strat/storymaps.html

     http://kids.mysterynet.com/

     http://www.qesnrecit.qc.ca/ccdb/2mmclub/

Mystery Quote of the Week:

“Often the hands will solve a mystery that the intellect has struggled with in vain.”

                      Carl Gustav Jung, Psychiatrist

Author Study:  Donald Sobol Encyclopedia Brown

Activity:  Bring newspapers to class.  Have students cut out articles that appear to be good material for mystery stories.

Activity:  Mystery Simulation

     Mystery Festival Week 4

World Mystery of the Week

     Bigfoot and the Yeti

     http://www.virtuescience.com/yeti.html

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/951851/alleged_bigfoot_body_found_in_georgia.html

http://www.unmuseum.org/yeti.htm

Georgia Mystery of the Week

     *Crop Circles in Atlanta

http://www.mysterypages.com/Crop_Circles.htm

http://www.mysterypages.com/Crop_Circle_Videos--vv-crop_circles-News.htm

Activity:  Thinkquest, the Yeti

http://library.thinkquest.org/C003325F/yeti.htm

Week 5

Essential Question:  With what information and format do mystery writers write their stories?

Writing a Mystery Story From a Newspaper Article

    Mystery Author Tips

     http://library.thinkquest.org/J002344/AuthorTips.html

Research Resources For Mystery and Crime Writers

http://www.writerswrite.com/journal/feb99/gak12.htm

Mystery Quote of the Week:

“Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life.”

                      Rachel Carson, Environmentalist

Author Study:  Eoin Colfer Artemis Fowl

Activity:  Mystery Simulations

     Mystery Festival Week 5

World Mystery of the Week

     Mysterious Disappearances

           Amelia Earhart

http://www.spartechsoftware.com/dimensions/vanished/EmeliaEarhart.htm

     Amelia Earhart:  The Mystery Lives On

     http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/kids/

     The Mystery of Roanoke Island

http://www.coastalguide.com/packet/lostcolony-croatan.shtml

http://colonial-america.suite101.com/article.cfm/the_lost_colony_of_roanoke

http://www.eduref.org/cgi-bin/printlessons.cgi/Virtual/Lessons/Social_Studies/US_History/USH0210.html

Georgia Mystery of the Week

     *Hogzilla

http://video.poc.nationalgeographic.com/video/player/kids/animals-pets-kids/wild-detectives-kids/wd-ep1-hogzilla.html

Activity:  Thinkquest, Roanoke

     http://library.thinkquest.org/3826/intro.html

Week 6

Essential Question:  How do agencies such as the CIA and the FBI solve mysteries?

Solving the Mystery

http://www.educationworld.com/a_tsl/archives/02-1/lesson036.shtml

 FBI for Kids 1-5

     http://www.fbi.gov/kids/k5th/kidsk5th.htm

FBI for Youth 6-12

     http://www.fbi.gov/kids/6th12th/6th12th.htm

 CIA for KIds

https://www.cia.gov/kids-page/index.html

Activity:  Detective Activities for Kids

http://home.howstuffworks.com/detective-activities-for-kids.htm

Activity:  Create a DNA Fingerprint

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/sheppard/analyze.html

Mystery Quote of the Week:

“Some mystery should be left in the revelation of character in a play, just as a great deal of mystery is always left in the revelation of character in life, even in one’s own character of oneself.” 

                      Tennessee Williams, Playwright

Author Study:  Virginia Hamilton The House of Dies Drear

World Mystery of the Week

     Spring Heeled Jack

     http://www.virtuescience.com/spring-heeled-jack.html

     The Mary Celeste, 1861

     http://www.maryceleste.net/

     http://www.mysteriesofcanada.com/Nova_Scotia/mary_celeste.htm

     The Flying Dutchman

     http://ghosts-hauntings.suite101.com/article.cfm/ghost_ship_the_flying_dutchman

     http://library.thinkquest.org/C0126236/myths_and_legends.htm

Activity:  Mystery Simulation

     Mystery Festival Week 6

Georgia Mystery of the Week

     *Snowball:  Killer Goat or Scapegoat?

http://www.ajc.com/hotjobs/content/printedition/2009/03/02/whatever0302.html

     The Mystery of Megaliths

     http://www.eduref.org/cgi-bin/printlessons.cgi/Virtual/Lessons/Social_Studies/World_History/Ancient_History/ANH0204.html

Activity:  Thinkquest,  The Flying Dutchman

     http://library.thinkquest.org/C007461/dutchman.htm

Activity:  The Mystery Jeopardy Game    

     http://www.cplrmh.com/MysteryJeopardy.ppt#256,2,Slide 2

Week 7

Essential Question:  Why is it that some mysteries are never solved?

The Mystery of Catalhoyuk

     http://www.smm.org/catal/

PBS Mysteries

     Murder Mystery #1

     http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/mystery/game.html

Activity:  Food Detectives

     http://www.fooddetectives.com/welcome.html

Mystery Quote of the Week:

“Let mystery have its place in you; do not always be turning up your own soil with the ploughshare of self-examination, but leave a little fallow corner in your heart ready  for any seeds the winds may bring…”

                        Henry Frederic Amiel,, Writer 

Author Study:  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Sherlock Holmes’s The Hound of the

                          Baskervilles

                          http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/hound/ei_mystery.html

                          http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/hound/tguide.html

Activity:  Mystery Simulation

     Mystery Festival Week 7

World Mystery of the Week

     Easter Island

     http://www.virtuescience.com/easter-island-heads.html

     http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/easter/

Georgia Mystery of the Week

     *Altamaha-Ha (also known as ‘Altie’)

http://believeittour.com/wordpress/2010/01/20/altie-or-altamaha-ha-of-darien-georgia/

                (bring this up at home)

Activity:  Thinkquest, Easter Island Statues

     http://library.thinkquest.org/C007461/easter_island.htm

Week 8

Essential Question:  Why is it that some mysteries are never solved?

PBS Mysteries:

     Murder Mystery #2

     http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/mystery/game.html

Activity:  Mystery Numbers

    http://www.rhlschool.com/math6n2.htm

Mystery Quote of the Week:

“Mystery creates wonder and wonder is the basis of man’s desire to understand.”

                        Neil Armstrong, Astronaut

Author Study:  Edgar Allen Poe Murder in the Rue Morgue

                          http://www.sdcoe.k12.ca.us/score/poe/poetg.html

Activity:  Mystery Simulation

     Mystery Festival Week 8

Activity:  The Mumler Mystery

http://www.photographymuseum.com/mumler.html

World Mystery of the Week

     What Killed  the Dinosaurs

http://www.ucmp.berkeley.edu/diapsids/extinctheory.html

http://www.unmuseum.org/deaddino.htm

     The Tunguska Explosion in Siberia, Russian 1908

     http://www.icr.org/research/index/researchp_sa_r05/

     http://www.psi.edu/projects/siberia/siberia.html

Georgia Mystery of the Week

     The Georgia Ghosts

http://www.georgiaghostsociety.com/

Activity:  Thinkquest, Georgia Ghost at the Springer Opera House

    http://library.thinkquest.org/06aug/02020/stories.htm

Week 9

Essential Question:  Why is it important to review all of the facts and to “think outside the box”?

The Mystery of Catalhoyuk

     http://www.smm.org/catal/

PBS Mysteries

     Murder Mystery #3

     http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/mystery/game.html

Activity:  Millennium Mystery Madness Thinkquest

     http://library.thinkquest.org/J002344/

A Nick Bounty Mystery

     The Case of the Crabs

    http://www.otterarchives.com/bountygame.html

Activity:  You Are The Detective Thinkquest

http://library.thinkquest.org/5109/

Activity:  Mystery Simulation

     Mystery Festival Week 9

Mystery Quote of the Week:

“What has puzzled us before seems less mysterious, and the crooked paths look straighter as 

   we approach the end.”

                        Jean Paul Richter, Novelist

Author Study:  Phillip Pullman The Ruby in the Smoke

         Agatha Christie “”The Mousetrap”, a play

                                     Witness for the Prosecution

               http://web.pinknet.cz/AgathaChristie/e-menu.html (view at home)

World Mystery of the Week

     The Iceman and the Bog People

http://wilderdom.com/evolution/OtziIcemanAlpsPictures.htm

      The Tollund Man Mystery

      History Mystery Detectives

     The Tollund Man Mystery

http://www.schoolhistory.co.uk/year7links/history/The_Tollund_Man_Mystery.pdf

     The Iceland Volcano:  A Split in the Earth

http://www.boston.com/bigpicture/2010/04/icelands_disruptive_volcano.html

http://www.nat.is/travelguideeng/geology_volcanic_activity.htm

http://www.exploratorium.edu/theworld/iceland/volcanoes.html

Georgia Mystery of the Week

     *The Missing Gold of the Confederacy

http://civilwartalk.com/forums/civil-war-news-blog-reader/27586-1-million-dollars-confederate-gold-found-sunken-ship.html

http://www.georgiamountains.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=23&Itemid=27

Activity:  Thinkquest, The Iceman

http://library.thinkquest.org/TQ0312592/

Week 10

Essential Question:  Why is it important to have good problem solving skills?

Summarization of Unit: 

     Discussion and review.

     Presentation of Plays

     Presentation of Mystery Books written by students.

Activity:  Mystery Scavenger Hunt

     http://library.thinkquest.org/J002344/Hunt.html

Activity:  Mystery Simulation

     Mystery Festival Week 10

Mystery Quote of the Week: 

“The final mystery is oneself.”  Oscar Wilde, Irish Poet and Novelist 

Author Study:  Ellen Raskin, The Westing Game 

     John Fitzgerald  The Great Brain

     http://litplans.com/authors/John_D_Fitzgerald.html

World Mystery of the Week

     Monsters of the Sea:  The Loch Ness Monster

                                         “Champ” of Lake Champlain

     http://www.virtuescience.com/lochness-monster.html

     http://www.lclt.org/Champ.htm

http://www.strimoo.com/video/9758724/Plesiosaur-in-Lake-Champlain-MySpaceVideos.html

     Swallowed by a Real-Life Whale:  James Bartley, 1891

     http://www.ycaol.com/swallowed.htm

Georgia Mystery of the Week

 The Georgia Guidestones

http://www.world-mysteries.com/sar_ga_guidestones.htm

Activity:  Thinkquest, the Loch Ness Monster

     http://library.thinkquest.org/C003325F/Loch%20ness.htm

Activity:  Thinkquest, Unseen Creatures: Lake and Sea Monsters

     http://library.thinkquest.org/27979/html/seamonsters.htm

Activity:  Thinkquest, James Bartley, Explaining the Unexplained, Amazing Survivals

     http://library.thinkquest.org/C007446F/survive.htm

 

Resources

A Roman Murder Mystery.     

http://www.btinternet.com/~james.fanning/RomanMystery/intro/index.html

Bunnicula:  A Rabbit Tale of Mystery

http://www.teachervision.fen.com/fiction/activity/1730.html

Carol Hurst’s Children’s Literature Site:  Mysteries

     http://www.carolhurst.com/subjects/mysteries.html

Chapter Book Mystery Story List.

     http://childrensbooks.about.com/od/mysteries/Mysteries.htm

Literature:  What Makes a Good Short Story?

     http://www.learner.org/interactives/literature/index.html

*Miles, Jim.  (2006).  Weird Georgia.  New York, NY:  Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.

     ISBN Number 13:978-1-4027-3388-8

Mystery Festival Teacher’s guide. (1994).  Berkeley, CA:  Lawrence Hall of Science, 

     University of California.  ISBN Number 0-924886-10-2

Mystery Fiction Book List

      http://www.hrl.lib.state.va.us/handley/Booklists/mystery.htm

     http://contemporarylit.about.com/arts/mysterybooks/

Mystery Net.  Mystery

     Mystery Vocab, elements, solving, etc.

     http://sesd.sk.ca./teacherresource/themelinks/mystery.htm

Mystery Operations  http://www.learner.org/teacherslab/math/patterns/mystery/

Mystery Pages website.  http://www.mysterypages.com

     Videos of world mysteries.

The Case of the Barking Dogs.  http://scifiles.larc.nasa.gov/text/educators/episodes/2000_2001/barking_dogs.html

The Case of the Disappearing Water

http://www.epa.gov/region01/students/pdfs/ww_disap.pdf

The Case of the Incredible Shrinking http://www.epa.gov/region01/students/pdfs/ww_disap.pdf

The Case of the Troubling Triplets

http://teacher.scholastic.com/maven/triplets/index.htm

The Case of the Virtual Pet 2000

http://teacher.scholastic.com/maven/virtual/index.htm

Writing a Mystery:  http://volweb.utk.edu/Schools/bedford/harrisms/mystery.htm

 

 

MYSTERIES GIFTED UNIT

GPS Standards

 

ELA5R1 The student demonstrates comprehension and shows evidence of a warranted and responsible explanation of a variety of literary and informational texts.

For literary texts, the student identifies the characteristics of various genres

and produces evidence of reading that:

a. Identifies and analyzes the elements of setting, characterization, and conflict in plot.

b. Identifies and analyzes the structural elements particular to dramatic literature

(e.g., scenes, acts, cast of characters, stage directions) in the plays read, viewed,

written, and performed.

c. Identifies and analyzes the similarities and differences between a narrative text

and its film or play version.

d. Relates a literary work to information about its setting (historically or culturally).

f. Identifies and analyzes the author’s use of dialogue and description.

g. Applies knowledge of the concept that theme refers to the message about life and the

world that the author wants us to understand whether implied or stated.

i. Makes judgments and inferences about setting, characters, and events and supports

them with elaborating and convincing evidence from the text.

j. Identifies similarities and differences between the characters or events and

theme in a literary work and the actual experiences in an author’s life.

For informational texts, the student reads and comprehends in order to

develop understanding and expertise and produces evidence of reading that:

a. Locates facts that answer the reader’s questions.

b. Identifies and uses knowledge of common textual features (e.g., paragraphs,

topic sentences, concluding sentences, glossary).

c. Identifies and uses knowledge of common graphic features (e.g., charts, maps,

diagrams, captions, and illustrations).

d. Identifies and uses knowledge of common organizational structures; e.g.

 


 

MYSTERY UNIT

 

Resources

A Roman Murder Mystery.      

http://www.btinternet.com/~james.fanning/RomanMystery/intro/index.html

Bunnicula:  A Rabbit Tale of Mystery

http://www.teachervision.fen.com/fiction/activity/1730.html

Carol Hurst’s Children’s Literature Site:  Mysteries

     http://www.carolhurst.com/subjects/mysteries.html

Chapter Book Mystery Story List.

     http://childrensbooks.about.com/od/mysteries/Mysteries.htm

Literature:  What Makes a Good Short Story?

     http://www.learner.org/interactives/literature/index.html

*Miles, Jim.  (2006).  Weird Georgia.  New York, NY:  Sterling Publishing Co., Inc.

     ISBN Number 13:978-1-4027-3388-8

Mystery Festival Teacher’s guide. (1994).  Berkeley, CA:  Lawrence Hall of Science, 

     University of California.  ISBN Number 0-924886-10-2

Mystery Fiction Book List

      http://www.hrl.lib.state.va.us/handley/Booklists/mystery.htm

     http://contemporarylit.about.com/arts/mysterybooks/

Mystery Net.  Mystery

     Mystery Vocab, elements, solving, etc.

     http://sesd.sk.ca./teacherresource/themelinks/mystery.htm

Mystery Operations  http://www.learner.org/teacherslab/math/patterns/mystery/

Mystery Pages website.  http://www.mysterypages.com

     Videos of world mysteries.

The Case of the Barking Dogs.  http://scifiles.larc.nasa.gov/text/educators/episodes/2000_2001/barking_dogs.html

The Case of the Disappearing Water

http://www.epa.gov/region01/students/pdfs/ww_disap.pdf

The Case of the Incredible Shrinking http://www.epa.gov/region01/students/pdfs/ww_disap.pdf

The Case of the Troubling Triplets

http://teacher.scholastic.com/maven/triplets/index.htm

The Case of the Virtual Pet 2000

http://teacher.scholastic.com/maven/virtual/index.htm

Writing a Mystery:  http://volweb.utk.edu/Schools/bedford/harrisms/mystery.htm