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Our Times: Orange County Community News

Laguna Niguel

May 17, 2000|Rebecca Harris, (949) 574-4205

Deposits of blood, poison and fingerprints drew 32 investigators Tuesday to a campus crime scene to decipher a murder mystery.

But the boisterous giggles of the crime fighters broke up any notion of a serious scene. Shouts of "Cool!" and "Look!" echoed throughout the room.

The real motive for the mystery? Helping students develop analytical and problem-solving skills.

Grasping tiny magnifying glasses and litmus paper, fifth-grade students at Marian Bergeson Elementary School analyzed "evidence" from a classroom activity designed to spur them into enjoying gathering information.

"Who Killed Mr. Felix?" a lesson plan designed by educators at UC Berkeley, sends kids on a weeklong hunt for a supposed murder suspect.

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