877-542-5504 877-542-5504

Want to Help Fellow Teachers?

Please help us grow this free resource by submitting your favorite lesson plans.

Lesson Plan #:AELP-INT001
Author: Sandy Montgomery, Broken Arrow, OK
Endorsed by: These lesson plans are the result of the work of the teachers who have attended the Columbia Education Center’s Summer Workshop. CEC is a consortium of teacher from 14 western states dedicated to improving the quality of education in the rural, western, United States, and particularly the quality of math and science Education. CEC uses Big Sky Telegraph as the hub of their telecommunications network that allows the participating teachers to stay in contact with their trainers and peers that they have met at the Workshops. Date: May 1994

Grade Level(s): 4, 5


  • Interdisciplinary
  • Social Studies/US History
  • Social Studies/World History
  • Science/Space Sciences


This lesson plan may be used to introduce a study of ‘Mysteries’. It could include any of the following mysterious subjects: Easter Island, Bermuda Triangle, Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, Sasquatch, King Tut’s Tomb, Stonehenge, Machu Piccho, The Maya, Black Holes, Roanoke Island, Pyramids, Amelia Earhart, etc.


To encourage students to research various topics, stir up creative thoughts and lead them to wonder about the many ‘mysterious’ elements of literature, math, science, technology and life itself.


  • The learner will demonstrate creative thinking skills to find many, varied and unusual solutions to mysteries.
  • The learner will be able to relate two or more remote or commonly unassociated ideas.
  • The learner will develop research skills needed to discover the elements of a mystery.
  • Resources/Materials:

  • Enigmas , Cathy Kolbe, Think Ink Publication;
  • Monsters, Mysteries and UFO’S , Learning Works;
  • It’s a Mystery , Book Lures;
  • Creative Investigations and More Creative Investigations , Learning Works
  • Mystery and Detections , Jerry Flack
  • Activities and Procedures:

  • To introduce the unit the students will be asked to discuss and brainstorm answers to the question ‘What is a mystery’ by listing the many, different and unusual ways that a researcher is like a detective.
  • From the list of mysteries generated during the brainstorming session the teacher should select one to explore in-depth with the class. Example: A teacher might choose to explore the ‘Bermuda Triangle’ with the class by reading excerpts from several books on the subject to pique the student’s interest in exploring a mystery of their choosing.
  • Appropriate large group activities might include:
  • locate the Bermuda Triangle on a world map,
  • students will design a vessel suitable of withstanding travel in the Bermuda Triangle,
  • students will label the various parts of the vessel and tell how these will help the ship survive,
  • Students will design a survey to give to several people about the Bermuda Triangle. This might include questions on how many have actually traveled into or over the Triangle, or on the persons reaction to the theory itself. The results should be shared with class by using a graph or other appropriate methods.
  • Students will research to find other places where people were supposed to have mysteriously disappeared. The students will document the occurrences, discuss the similarities and/or differences.
  • Tying It All Together:

    Students individually or in pairs will select one of the remaining enigmas to investigate. They will do a short research report and then share what they learned with the class. They should use a creative audio visual approach to their presentation to encourage interest of the audience. Students must give their own theory of explanation for the enigma which they selected to research.

    Additional Activities: Students will make gameboards incorporating their knowledge of the various enigmas into the game itself. A game day is set aside and everyone plays each other’s game. The gameboard may be on a single topic or could be several enigmas on one board.