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Mystery of the Poison Dart Frog

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What it is: The Mystery of the Poison Dart Frog comes from the North Carolina Museum of Art.  Students are introduced to three characters in an online picture book.  Zoey and Zeke are visiting their cousin Camilla who works as a curator at an art museum in Costa Rica.  Soon students are swept away in a mystery and adventure as they must use clues and match up the Costa Rica art pieces with the notecards that were written by the donors of the art.  Along the way students learn to read for information, and learn about art, science, history, and culture of Costa Rica.  

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How to integrate the Mystery of the Poison Dart Frog into the classroom: The Mystery of the Poison Dart Frog is a fun way for students to practice reading for information and practicing the inferring reading strategy.  As students work through the mystery, they will also be learning about art, science, history, and the culture of Costa Rica. This is a great activity for students to complete independently in a computer lab or 1-to-1 setting, it is a little long to be completed as a center activity.  If you teach younger students, or students who may not be able to read the story independently, read the story as a class or small group using a projector connected computer or interactive whiteboard.  Students can work together to solve the mystery using the available clues in the story.  Before students begin reading the story, they can build background knowledge by using the built in research guide.  Students can learn more about Costa Rica with an interactive map, learn about the works of art they will see in the story, and the different animals represented in the works of art.

The story can be read in either English or Spanish.  For older students learning Spanish as a foreign language, the activity could be completed in Spanish.  This would be a fun activity to test their skills of reading for understanding in the Spanish language.

Tips: For more great related links, click on the “more” drop down from the home page.  Happy solving!

Please leave a comment and share how you are using Mystery of the Poison Dart Frog in your classroom.

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5 Comments

  1. Noelle, I think that 3rd grade students could navigate through this site and its reading independently. Younger students may need assistance.

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