• $4.99
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This escaped zoo animal close reading inference mystery is a fun way to engage your students and challenge them to look for text evidence, infer information, and read more closely. The resource includes everything you need to facilitate the activity in your classroom.

It’s a beautiful day at the Hill Valley Public Zoo. The zookeepers (your students) are making their usual rounds when they realize that something has gone terribly wrong. One of the cages is wide open with no animal in sight. Your students need to figure out which animal escaped the zoo.

Included in your purchase:

  • A teacher presentation that guides the mystery with the backstory, evidence, the correct answer, and detailed explanations for why or why not each animal could have escaped.
  • A classroom poster that reads “Do you know which animal escaped?” that you can put up on the door to hook students into the activity.
  • An original narrative backstory that sets up and initiates the mystery.
  • An animal handbook with a variety of clues that require students to close read and use their inference skills.
  • A graphic organizer where students can keep track of their findings.
  • A detailed teacher answer key in print format and within the presentation slideshow.


How it works:

  • Start by putting up the poster on your door to build anticipation when students enter the room. When students enter, put them in small groups, so they can work together to try to solve the mystery.
  • Use the presentation slides to guide you through each element of the lesson. The slides will help you introduce the story and evidence to each of the groups.
  • Hand out all the evidence to students and allow them time to make their predictions and inferences and solve the mystery.
  • Once each group has made their final prediction, use the presentation slides to reveal which animal escaped and go through the evidence for each animal.


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