Have you ever wondered, like Quinn here, about what our mini-lessons feature?
Dear Mystery Science,
My students love mini-lessons so much that I wish they lasted longer! They are always asking for Danni, Jay, Esther, and Doug! Some of my coworkers have mentioned that they teach one mini-lesson for a full science period, but I don’t understand how they’re doing it. Are there features in a mini-lesson that I’m missing? Are different options available?
That’s a great question, Quinn! We hear from so many teachers whose students love the Mystery Guides and want to see them as much as possible. We don’t blame them – we love Danni, Jay, Esther, and Doug too!
Mystery Science definitely offers options to extend mini-lessons beyond the 5-minute video, and we’d love to help you find a solution that works best for your science period!
Let’s break it down by section. Our mini-lessons feature:
- Mini-lesson Video
- The videos are about 5 minutes long, and it’s up to you how long you pause for discussion.
- On average, you might spend a total of 10 minutes on the mini-lesson.
- Bonus: Top 5 Video
- Many mini-lessons have an optional bonus at the end – 5 minutes of amazing visuals that spark curiosity to keep the discussion going.
- You might spend another 5-10 minutes marveling at these engaging images and discussing everyone’s thoughts.
- Bonus: Extensions
- Most mini-lessons feature optional extensions to keep the discussion going even longer!
- These additional questions and bonus activities help students continue to reflect on the lesson and can be done together as a class, or can even be assigned as homework. They’re designed to take about 5-10 minutes.
- Bonus: Activity
- Some mini-lessons also feature a fun, hands-on activity - while it’s optional, many students find the activity to be their favorite part!
- It varies by lesson, but you might spend an average of 15 minutes on the activity.
Remember, any discussion question can be used as a writing prompt instead! Many teachers extend mini-lessons by incorporating writing, which is a great way to make cross-curricular connections to literacy skills.
Each mini-lesson offers different options, so check out our archive to see which features are available for each lesson. While logged into your account, navigate to the top of the homepage to the "Mini-lessons" tab. Click on the tab to find our mini-lesson archive!
Curious to learn more? Here are some other resources you may find helpful: