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					                                     FINAL PROJECT

NAME: Heather Beach

CONTENT AREA: Language Arts

GRADE LEVEL: 6th Grade

TITLE OF PROJECT: Mystery Digital Storytelling

Cugliotta, Lauren. “Unit Plan for the Genre of Mystery.” November 26, 2006.

        Online. Internet.

Seal, Laura. “Using Technology to Investigate the Genre of Mystery.” 2001-2002.

        November 28, 2006. Online. Internet.

Narrative Statement of Rationale:

       Description of Project:

Sixth-grade students love puzzles and suspense. Eleven and twelve-year olds are just

beginning to leave the safe realm of the simple reader to branch out into sampling various

reading categories. Therefore, the puzzle-like form of a mystery story should stimulate an

appreciation and enjoyment of this genre. Many sixth grade students are already watching

mystery TV programs and enjoying horror flicks on their own. Not to mention, children

are watching the daily news where they see mysteries reported everyday. This unit is

intended to be a lighthearted and fun learning activity in which the students will practice

their critical reading and critical thinking skills, as they read, watch, hear, solve, and

create their own mystery digital storytelling. The digital storytelling can be an excellent

stimulus for utilizing study skills, such as cause-and-effect, logical deduction, and

assessing vital information and facts as well as become familiar with technology such as
digital cameras, software packages and other hardware. The purpose of this unit is to

enable students to identify various elements of mystery stories through reading, watching

and analyzing mysteries of several different genres, so that they will be better able to

employ them to write their own story for the end of the unit project. After reading

several short mysteries and discussing the literary elements of each, the students

collaborate to create a mystery movie. The students work in teams to solve a mystery

within the classroom setting. The teacher’s role is to lead the students in the process of

gathering evidence and interviewing suspects and other witnesses while orchestrating the

mystery. The students then create a storyboard while formulating a storyline for the

mystery movie. The students will be divided into five teams; writers, camera crew,

sound crew, editors, and actors. The students will take digital video images, create

sounds, write scripts, research and act to recreate and solve the mystery.

      Timeframe for Project: 30 full days of 55 minute classes

      Learning Objectives:

-Students will be able to identify the elements of a mystery in many different genres by

looking at many examples of mystery stories and charting the elements onto worksheets

and visual organizers.

-Students will be able to write a short mystery in which they utilize mystery elements,

such as sleuth, suspect, witness, motive, alibi, clue, red herring, evidence, and deduction.

-Students will be able to use clues to predict and hypothesize by identifying important

information and writing possible mystery solutions.

-Students will come to recognize their own abilities as detectives by reading and solving

mystery games online.
-Students will come to recognize mystery in the genre of nonfiction.

-Students will build on their deduction skills by reading two short mystery stories.

This intense exposure to mystery in nonfiction, fiction, film, and poetry will allow

students to identify the elements of a mystery. This will enable them to create a digital,

mystery story of their own.

Standards Addressed in the Project

Standard 3
READING: Comprehension and Analysis of Literary Text

Students read and respond to grade-level-appropriate historically or culturally
significant works of literature. The selections in the Indiana Reading List
( illustrate the quality and complexity of
the materials to be read by students. At Grade 6, students read a wide variety of fiction,
such as classic and contemporary literature, historical fiction, fantasy, science fiction,
mysteries, adventures, folklore, mythology, poetry, short stories, dramas, and other

Standard 4
WRITING: Processes and Features

Students discuss and keep a list of writing ideas and use graphic organizers to plan
writing. They write clear, coherent, and focused essays. Students progress through the
stages of the writing process and proofread, edit, and revise writing.

Standard 7
LISTENING AND SPEAKING: Skills, Strategies, and Applications

Students deliver focused, coherent presentations that convey ideas clearly and relate to
the background and interests of the audience. They evaluate the content of oral
communication. Students deliver well-organized formal presentations using traditional
speech strategies, including narration, exposition, persuasion, and description. Students
use the same Standard English conventions for oral speech that they use in their writing.
List of Materials/Resources (excluding technology resources)

Age Appropriate:

              Newspaper articles

              Mystery movie classics

              Student written short stories (

Detective Notebooks (journals)

Fingerprinting Kit

Fingerprint Dusting Kit

White and Black Paper


Pictures of Fingerprint Styles

Index Cards

Literary Web Map – Graphic Organizer

Timeline – Graphic Organizer

Adaptations for Diverse Learners Especially ENL Students

Read Alouds – many of the short stories will be read aloud in class

Grouping – different role available within the small groups

Graphic Organizers – to have another way to process the information

Visuals – films, overheads, concept maps
Initial Lesson Plan:

Learning Objectives:
Students will assess prior knowledge about the mystery genre.
Students will be introduced to new mystery terms and elements.
Students will be able to identify and analyze mystery elements in film.

Anticipatory Set:
(5 min) Detective Notebooks: What do you know about mysteries? In movies? In
news? On television? In stories? In poetry?

Teaching/Learning Activity
Part 1: (8 min) Teacher will discuss mystery terms and elements.

Part 2: (20 min) Students will view A Clue for Scooby Doo.
Students will identify mystery elements from film.

Part 3: (15 min) Students will compare finding in groups.
Groups will report on findings.

Part 4: (7 min) Culminating Activity: Whole group will discuss reactions to film.

    Movie: A Clue for Scooby Doo
    DVD/VCR
    Detective Notebooks
    Overhead

Students will:
    work in small and large groups.
    have extended time for identifying mystery elements.
    receive terms with definitions before class session.
    view film.

Culminating Activity
Whole group discussion about reactions to film

Independent Practice
Students will write in their Detective Notebooks the response to, “Was A Clue for
Scooby Doo a good mystery? What makes the film a good mystery?”

Teachers will observe student’s work in groups and participation in class discussion.
Detective Notebooks will be assessed for completion at mid-point of unit.
Mid-point Lesson Plan:
Learning Objectives
Students will be able to begin the storyboard process.
Students will be able to use timelines.
Students will identify detail for Literary Web.

Anticipatory Set
(5 min) Detective Notebooks: What feelings do you have about the Mystery Digital
Storytelling project? What issues/problems do you predict happening? What excites
you most about the project?

Teaching/Learning Activity
Part 1: (15 min) Students will create a concept map of the mystery to be used to
organize the digital video clips into scenes for the movie.

Part 2: (20 min) Individually, students will identify the literary elements of a
mystery and place them on a teacher created Literary Web for Mysteries template.
In small groups, students will identify and add details to the web that further
describes each element.

Part 3: (10 min) Students will identify the main events of the story and place them
in chronological order on a teacher created Timeline of Events template.

Part 4: (5 min) Culminating Activity – Whole group discussion of “What does
storyboarding help you with?”

    Detective Notebooks
    Concept Map
    Index Cards
    Copies of Literary Web for Mysteries and Timeline of Events template

Students will:
    work in small groups
    use visual aids – Literary Web and Timeline of Events

Independent Practice
Watch the news. Report your findings in your Detective Notebooks of a mystery in
the news.

Teachers will observe student’s work in groups and participation in class discussion.
Detective Notebooks will be assessed for completion at mid-point of unit.
Literary Web and Timeline of Events will be assessed for completion and possible

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