Add a little fun to your current literature study by turning your students into police officers. This official-looking offense/incident report requires students to collect details from their reading and use real-world writing skills to efficiently report the facts (just the facts, ma’am) of the scene you just read.
Students love that I’m not asking them to analyze anything here. This is just straight fact-collection and reporting, but the task still requires a significant understanding of the details of the passage they’re studying. Part of the police report assignment also includes a crime/incident-scene artistic sketch, which students of all ages (yes, even my high school seniors) really love. Keep some colored pencils nearby because students always ask for them.
Depending on the piece of literature, I sometimes allow students to fabricate a witness who isn’t mentioned in the text, like a nosy neighbor peeking through a window. Most literature, though, works fine with just the people in the scene as it was written.
This 2-page file (downloads as both a PDF and Google Drive version) includes a blank form and a completed sample to show students, if you wish. The sample is from my students’ study of Steinbeck's novel Of Mice and Men, but you could use this worksheet with ANY book or short story that has a crime/incident scene that would warrant police attention.
Want an eyewitness account of Miss Maudie Atkinson’s house fire in To Kill a Mockingbird? This would work.
Want someone to report the creepy action of an Edgar Allan Poe story to police? Oh yeah, the authorities will need this form.
Want to catalog the atrocities committed in Denmark’s royal palace? The witnesses in Shakespeare’s Hamlet will certainly keep your police officers busy.
Hope you enjoy this activity, which works with sixth graders through high school seniors.
Want more universal writing activities that will work with numerous pieces of literature?
SAVE 20% when you grab this Literature Supplement Lesson 10-Pack, which includes this high-interest activity plus many more!
Please note: This is the same form sold as part of my lesson materials for Roald Dahl's short story, "Lamb to the Slaughter," which you can view by clicking HERE. No need to purchase the police report worksheet on this page is you already own the "Lamb to the Slaughter" lesson materials or the short story unit bundle.
Finally, this item is also included in my English 9-10 full-year curriculum. If you already own the full-year download, please do not purchase this item here individually. If you’d like to receive this item plus everything else needed to teach 180 days of English 9 or English 10 at a deeply discounted price, click here to learn more about the full-year curriculum download.
Thanks for stopping by!
Image credit: Pixabay, Public domain