This is an activity designed to be used as an introduction to making inferences. I typically use it before going into a Mystery Unit where students will be asked to identify elements such as foreshadowing and symbolism. In other words, they will be asked to look closely at the text (close reading) and make inferences based on what they characters are doing or what the author is stating.
This activity gets them in the perfect mindset for mysteries, but also requires them to understand the difference between facts and inferences. They then have to create a believable and solid conclusion incorporating facts and inferences. Yes, the beginning works of analysis writing - supporting with evidence.
Students begin by working with the teacher and analyzing a crime scene photo as a class. They will complete the worksheet AS A CLASS. This is important so that all students understand the level of detail and expectations of the teacher.
Then they work with partners analyzing a different photo - completing the same worksheet. Finally students work individually analyzing an in class crime scene.
Students love the narrative aspect of this activity, but don't leave out the discussion they need to have with partners. It is imperative (especially for inclusion classrooms) that students have a chance to discuss their ideas and whether they make sense.
Enjoy and if you have any questions let me know!