Distance Learning Critical Thinking Mystery Activity: The Candy Thief PPT

Rated 4.6 out of 5, based on 5 reviews
5 Ratings
Walton Burns
Grade Levels
3rd - 9th, Homeschool
Formats Included
  • PPTX
11 pages
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Walton Burns
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One of my best-selling Clue by Clue Activities, with a Halloween twist.


In this fun mystery activity, students investigate who stole a bag of candy from a trick or treater. There are three witness, but one of them is lying. Can your students read and analyze their statements and figure out who the liar is?

This is the PowerPoint version. There is also a Printable PDF Version and a Google Slides version.

What is a Clue by Clue Mystery?

It's a great warm-up, critical thinking game, conversation starter, filler, or a time killer for early finishers. Students are given a mystery to solve--whodunit or how did they do it or why. They have to figure it out by reading a series of clues, one at a time. As they receive each clue, they speculate on its significance and what it tells them about the situation.

Once they have received all the clues, they should have enough information to figure it out!

Why Use Clue by Clues?

Clue by Clues encourage critical thinking and discussion. They are also close reading activities that teach students to look for details, synthesize information from different sources, apply prior knowledge about the world, and to recognize the logic of a claim and evaluate its validity.

While students are solving the mysteries they are also developing their spoken language skills, using language such as:

* Modal verbs of speculation: She must have forgotten her keys, It could have been the butler

* Opinion language: I think...., I’m positive..., I’m not sure...

* Hedging: It’s possible, probably, maybe, it’s not impossible.

* Conclusions: That means that...

* Emphasis: There’s no way that...

* Hypotheticals: What if he didn’t do it, If he was at the movies, he couldn’t have done it.

They are also a lot of fun!

Teacher Notes on how to use them are included with hints and the solution along with a students sheet that contains the clues for you to copy and cut up to give to students


Enjoy this? Check out my entire Mystery Section with more clue by clues in different formats. I also have activities to help students write their own mysteries and more! You can also find activities that reference holidays in the Holiday Section.

And please leave a review. It helps others find this resource and gives me valuable feedback when creating new ones!

Total Pages
11 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
30 minutes
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