Mystery Map

Mystery Map lesson plan

Intrigue classmates with a Mystery Map using hidden words, facts, and hints to locate treasures.

  • 1.

    Gather students in a central area of the classroom, such as the reading rug. Ask them what they like about mystery stories. Document student contributions to the discussion using a classroom white board and Crayola® Dry-Erase Markers.

  • 2.

    Organize students into small groups and ask each group to brainstorm a topic for a mystery story. They will be creating a Mystery Map based on their topic.

  • 3.

    On paper, students use Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils to draw the hints in correct sequence on their maps. Encourage groups to surround the clues with drawings made with erasable colored pencils. Students write connecting words between the steps. The accuracy of the map should be checked by teammates.

  • 4.

    Groups exchange Mystery Maps with classmates. Provide class time for students to figure out the answers. Students should be prepared to present their answers and explain how they arrived at the final answer.


  • LA: Participate in shared research and writing projects (e.g., read a number of books on a single topic to produce a report; record science observations).
  • LA: Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
  • SS: Use appropriate resources, data sources, and geographic tools to generate, manipulate, and interpret information.
  • VA: Use different media, techniques, and processes to communicate ideas, experiences, and stories.
  • VA: Use visual structures of art to communicate ideas.


  • Students can use the concept of the Mystery Map to develop this activity for a younger group of students as a motivator for participating in a new activity.