Solving mysteries is fun – or at least looks fun when I watch on TV. I use solving a crime as the way to talk about the process of science. The participants have to evaluate the evidence and come up with a plausible explanation. When I want to drive the point home, I don’t give the solution because there is no big textbook where you can check that the results of your science experiments are right.
Why don't you try this year's mystery? – Death at the Day-Lee Grind. I’ve tried to include all the information.
One of my jobs is Future Science Leaders for students who want to do more in science and technology. Many of these students are used to doing well on tests and getting external validation – when I don’t tell them the planned explanation for a mystery, it drives them crazy. Some of the students from last year are still asking about the ‘right’ answer for their mystery. One of the fun things from last year – we had 6 groups and 5 different answers.
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