School wide events give the community shared experiences that bond everyone together. Mystery Month was such an event.
Lady D and I first created a CLUE scenario that would be appropriate for all ages including our Kindergarten students:
Ms. Nobody disappeared from the school on Friday afternoon and hadn’t been seen since.
It was important to us to stay away from the murder theme from the original CLUE game, as we wanted it to be as PG as possible.
Next, we approached 6 staff members to become the suspects in the crime. We took “mug shots” and made up damaging profiles that were hung in the display case outside the library. One suspect was introduced per day at the very beginning of the month along with the possible tools and crime scenes:
Professor Plum: Music teacher
Lady Lavender: Art teacher
Miss Scarlet: Drama teacher
Mrs. Peacock: Wanna-be librarian
Mr. Green: Tech teacher
Major Mustard: PE teacher
6 Tools: candlestick, skipping rope, guitar, paintbrush, iPad, book
8 Crime Scenes: library, gym, computer lab, music room, dance room, kitchen, hallway, office
Then, we came up with clues that were posted one at a time on the hallway bulletin board outside the library. The students read the suspect profiles and the daily clues and through a process of elimination they decided “who, with what, and where” on their CLUE ballots that were kept in division bins in the library.
To receive extra ballots for extra guesses, students could read mystery books from our display (picture books, and short/long novels).
Lady D and I filmed an iMovie trailer that introduced Ms. Nobody and the crime. We showed it at an assembly and it was a hit.
Tip: Looking back, I would have filmed a less scary version for the Kindergarten classes.
Each division watched the Prezi presentation during library time that outlined the guidelines of the game more clearly.
For the rest of the month, students pondered and worked together to solve the crime. I used library classes to work through the new clues with the Kindergarten, Grade One and Grade Two classes. We discussed and voted on our choices and I filled out a class ballot for the younger grades. Students in grades Three, Four and Five either could either work alone or with other people (including their families).
We ended the month with a wrap up video and prizes were awarded.
The students’ critical thinking blew me away during the event and some students discovered a new genre to enjoy!
It was definitely a success!
A New Blacklock Literacy Initiative
A dream has become a reality for our fabulous Grade 4/5 teacher, Queen Troll, as she and the rest of the Blacklock staff premiered their bedtime story Youtube channel last week.
With our students' reading scores on the rise, we were concerned that the scores did not reflect the students' enjoyment of reading. This year, Blacklock Fine Arts Elementary's goal is to instil a love of literacy in all of our students, staff, and the community.
It is our hope that Blacklock Bedtime Stories will provide our community with a opportunity to cozy up with loved ones and enjoy a special story read by one of our passionate staff members every Thursday night at 6 pm, PST.
I'm honoured to help Queen Troll get this project off the ground by filming and editing the video clips. (The videos become less "cringey" over time, I promise!)
Please enjoy our bedtime stories and share our channel with other families and educators!
Youtube: The Mischievous Librarian Channel:
In the words of our amazing Blacklock Bedtime Stories creator, Queen Troll: