sq_logoSPEAQ Quest

Investigation with Sherlock Holmes


Codruta Marcu, Marie-Soleil Bergeron,

Robert Beaudry & Robert Menzies


Link to Teacher's Guide




What are the steps involved in an investigation?

How can you solve a mystery like a professional?





Every day, people work to solve mysteries and crimes. They do this by looking at evidence and making deductions. Together, you and Sherlock Holmes are going to work to solve a mystery. While you do this, you can see just how real detectives find answers and solve cases!


You will be working in groups of 3 for this Quest. Make sure that you remember to work as a team and that you have fun!


Whenever you see this image, you must click on the link right next to it and print out the activity sheet which you must do to move along to the next level of the quest.


P.S. Some of the difficult words have been hyperlinked to an online dictionary. You can simply press the CTRL button and click with your mouse at the same time to open an online dictionary with a definition of the word.


Good luck!













Learning Activity #1 - Elementary, my dear Watson!


Sherlock Holmes is a famous detective, known for his sharp observation skills and bizarre investigation methods. Let’s see what we can learn about him!


Click on the following link and read the article entitled “Who Is Sherlock Holmes?”




Let’s see what you’ve learned about the great detective Sherlock Holmes.


Part I:  Matching

Part II:  Comprehension Questions


Now that you have read the article, you are ready to be a detective just like Sherlock. In order to be his partner, Sherlock Holmes needs you to start thinking like an investigator, so put on your thinking cap - it will help you find answers to the most difficult questions.

Here’s how you can make your own thinking cap:





Task #1 - Sell yourself on Fakebook!


You are now officially Sherlock Holmes’ partner. Based on the text you just read, you will create a profile on Fakebook advertising your services.


Make sure to include:

- all of your names

- your occupation

- the services you offer

- your contact information (phone number or e-mail address)

- pictures and/or drawings


Before you start, click on the following links to see some examples of ads:





What kind of information do you see in these ads?

What kind of information should you put in yours?


Use this space to write down key words to help you create your profile.


Now create your profile on Fakebook.     http://classtools.net/fb/home/page




Learning Activity #2 - You found a what?! 


Congratulations! You have received your first job! Here is an e-mail that was sent to your investigation agency. The writer is hysterical and claims that the tracks are too big to have been made by anything but a DINOSAUR!!! Unfortunately, your computer has a strange virus that has turned all of the verbs into the present tense when they should be in the simple past tense.  Before you can continue, you need to use your detective skills to correct the verbs.


Sherlock has found these sites to help you.





Instructions: Using these websites, conjugate all of the verbs indicated in this email into the Simple Past tense!


The principal of the school needs you to solve this mystery!



Description: https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/P-eS6Tjr8wYr0UxL_8C8SCDkrdRrPQugZgx3P_m3WL8SmEZAJ7cPgm2iyvMq0dqqpp1lHDIOLba8VnO_c0kIvsoCms2hAw21o34eXRTD-J0Pb6Jz2A0

Oral Activity #1 - Whose prints are they anyway?


Instructions: Look at the following pictures and then discuss these questions with your group. The teacher will be walking around to listen to your discussion and grading you on your speaking skills.



Description: https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/aNWLkkGVE6K-TBbTd9K2Z08grNJlXZFZ-Ye5JPDEc1Z6WiwF5GO08htWYcAjg_5TJOQCpiF6w6rJKddiMhC1XTNR8pPHVl1FI33Jk6V5i_LwSca44qE                         Description: https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/B9cgkRgud87boEdHRLAfjREkfNtbiMmf1YhW5UqY0vX7rv4_FNEP1IV--T22pWGogC-hIA-q_cXrMA2dIlw8AW0NSo-IXA7O6bi85edXkwp2j5KDDYU                        

Description: https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/F3okEjxXZ7JHtbT2wBdRqY1q1Tk2IOFzttqIaNyhP9wwkSrAsr7qBFM9aogcPYJJVfiIkmF0RQ103ogdk_IVeWfnuOJMegre13SUFMc7ODu5bp8G-d0                               Description: https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/gcBmwDlnOsO_YNtTCiBqEzMvO4obAFnZydRckDsyguxXf_lWFasrxW_JDwaO_URnQehjT1zpYYYcBtUPjtQKlT0g7ARueqyYOzceJPohXXF2Bb1ggoA                                           




Description: https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/fJVvijGE4j-ED7J3uOrI9_u84yoJ8juDMHQVM7BhF5nCIiLKXIJFKLIbbNesP57pSuUcbYjrqb1ISO8yJ2HRbLS_Q6pQKh_5wp0BYBgy1s3iSQNT42I                         Description: https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/gBoibv5QOODJYiCAz4yYavxMDF5Xqw095ZDx82XCZehssRjx9eV00Kp6OEyZyd-b1odCSf4r6kmuO_A67p497Z4X8DOXvBpWCvKFzKAFA31YJ4_-aDU     


Description: https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/lENvZ3k1v9nUXaDvejiW7jAWINwXGSYWGA-7jQlbz8btH22MJyVrxHbava0ELzHsP30YH7U72zVrpC_NG6LS3rceQHctjPrd939W1cqxt0exdwvpem0



Task #2 - What does the evidence say? 


Thanks to your help, Sherlock has realised that the tracks must be fake. But who would make fake dinosaur tracks in front of the school? Sherlock has found three suspects, but he needs your help to determine which person is the one who placed the fake tracks!

Suspect #1 

Billy Terrebonne:  Billy is a student at the school, and he HATES going to class! He’d do anything to have a day off. He wears sneakers and likes to drink grape soda. Yesterday he lost the twenty American dollars his uncle had given him for his birthday. Last night, he said he was at home with his parents, watching TV.

Suspect #2 

Gordon Milligan:  Gordon is a construction worker working at the school. He doesn’t like his boss, and wanted to get her in trouble before going on vacation to California for two weeks. Gordon smokes cigarettes and wears big heavy boots. He said that last night he was at home preparing for his trip.

Suspect #3 

Janet MacKenzie:  Janet is a teacher at the school. She loves her job but wants a vacation very badly. She likes to wear boots on cold winter days and loves to eat chocolate bars. Last night she was having dinner with a friend.

Here are some tools to help you perform your investigations. Read the text carefully:

What elements from those mentioned on the website can you use to solve the mystery of the lawn tracks? Write YES or NO under the name of each suspect if there is matching evidence!


Continue filling in this chart!

FINAL TASK - Whodunit?   

Hypothesize! When detectives investigate a crime, they usually make a hypothesis after they have gathered all of their evidence so that they can say who they think is responsible for the crime.  Sherlock needs you to prepare a report that he can give to the school principal.  In order to help Sherlock, you must complete the following steps:

Step 1:  Organize Your Thoughts!

Print out the “Detective’s Report” form and fill it out with the help of your teammates. This will help you prepare for the final report which you will make for Sherlock to give to the school principal.  Go back and look at the work you have already done to help you fill out the report.  At the end, talk about who you think is responsible and what evidence you have for your decision.






Step 2:  Report for the Principal! 

The report you make for Sherlock to show the principal has to be very
detailed.  Sherlock has asked that you make a poster showing, step by step, how you think the crime was committed. He needs to know what you think happened BEFORE the crime happened, what you think happened DURING the crime, and what the suspect did AFTER he/she committed the crime.

To do this, each member of the team must draw one picture and write 1-2 sentences below the picture to describe it.  Do this for each section of the poster (BEFORE, DURING, & AFTER). Remember, all of this is a report on things that happened in the past so make sure to use the Simple Past correctly.

Use this format to make your poster.




Step 3: Poster Presentation 

Each team will present their hypothesis to every other team and discuss why they agree or disagree with their hypothesis. 


Remember to use phrases like: “I agree, because…,” “I disagree, because…,” “Why do you think that?” when discussing this.


Also, don’t forget the following strategies if you are having trouble talking:


“How do you say _____________ in English?”


“I don’t understand the word __________.  Please explain.”


Ask your colleagues and/or teacher for help!