The crew of a ship stumbles upon another ship at sea. Upon investigation, they find that all the cargo is still onboard, but the crew has vanished. Are you hooked? Your students will be too, in this engaging first-day activity that will really set your expectations for the school year!
Listen as Jessica outlines her favorite first day of school activity, in which students explore the true, unsolved mystery of The Mary Celeste. Students have so much fun trying to solve the mystery as they use the questioning, evidence, and justification skills that will be expected of them all year long. Talk about setting the tone!
Excited to try this activity but already have plans for your first few days? No worries! This activity, which takes 1-2 days to complete, can really be done at any time of the year. Jessica will give some great ideas for other times to use this lesson and how to guide students along as they try to solve the mystery of the missing crew.
Tune in now to hear:
- [02:30] Before listening to this awesome first-day activity, take note: you can do it ANY time of the year!
- [03:10] Jessica lays out her favorite first day of school activity
- [03:30] How a mystery challenge hooks students and sets the tone for the year
- [04:35] A great true mystery Jessica used: The Mary Celeste mystery! Jessica highly recommends Jane Yolen’s book picture, The Mary Celeste: An Unsolved Mystery from History
- [05:05] Some background on the Mary Celeste
- [09:15] A recap of the materials you will need for this 1-2 day lesson and explanation of how to set up a simple evidence tracker for students to use
- [10:30] An extension idea for older students
- [11:30] Jessica shares her own theories on what happened to The Mary Celeste!
- [13:20] Join Caitlin and Jessica next week as Caitlin shares her favorite classroom management system. It’s a game changer!
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I love this! I actually did something similar to this by using drawings or pictures with just enough info for students to figure out who did what. Teacher’s need a book with both stories and pics to tantalize students’ interests and responses using evidence and justification.
Every subject can teach this! Imagine using the same skills for math, science, history, and art!! Imagine using all subject skills together!