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Critical Thinking Detective™ – Vocabulary Book 2

Fun Mystery Cases to Improve Vocabulary

Grades: 5-12+

Critical Thinking, Language Arts

Grades: 5-12+

Critical Thinking, Language Arts

  •  Multiple Award Winner
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Description & Features

This is the fun way to learn new vocabulary! These popular, easy-to-use detective cases are suitable for Grades 5 – 12+. The vocabulary in these mysteries was gathered from a multitude of sources including SAT and ACT word lists and the author’s reading selections. Merriam Webster’s online dictionary provided many of the details about the words including usage, look-up history, synonyms and antonyms.

Students must identify the meaning of new vocabulary as they try to uncover the subtle clues hidden in the statements from witnesses and suspects. Each mystery features between 16 and 25 vocabulary words and every one of them requires careful reading, critical thinking, and synthesizing information to identify the innocent and guilty. The cases also develop observation skills, reading comprehension, deductive and inductive thinking skills. Learning to identify and evaluate evidence is the very heart of critical thinking.

After solving each case, the second part of the activity gives versatility to the vocabulary words as students practice using them in a different context. Readers choose the appropriate word from the word list to complete each sentence. When the word lists contain synonyms, students have flexibility in their choices.

These activities and their vocabulary words are not easy, but don’t despair. If you take the time to decipher the unknown words and reread, you’ll have sharper critical thinking skills and an expanded vocabulary.

For more critical thinking and detective fun, please see the complete Critical Thinking Detective series and Something's Fishy in Lake Iwannafsha.

Product Details

Item#: 11632BBP
Author(s): Diane Hartsig
TOC: View Table Of Contents
Type: Student Book with Answers
Media: Paperback Book
License: Reproducible
ISBN–13: 978-1-60144-949-8
Pages: 40, color (perforated)


Creative Child Magazine 2018 Book of the Year Award, Educational Books for Kids Category The Old Schoolhouse Magazine - Homeschool Blue Ribbon Award for Favorite Middle School Product Tillywig Brain Child Award, 2017

Product Reviews Write a review for this product

"They claim that this resource, and their products in general, make! They've won awards, and the consensus from most is really, really good. But c'mon, are they serious? YES, this is a fantastic resource, and I love it, and the company.

Unless you're a vocabulary whizz, you'll want a good dictionary handy as you work through these challenges. Our general consensus is...this is fun! We all found ourselves laughing as we tried to solve the mysteries. I couldn't believe my ignorance regarding vocabulary. I do love learning new and unusual words, and I'm excited to share this with my fellow word nerds.This is a great supplement to your regular English/Grammar program. It would also be a great activity to use with youth groups, Sunday schools, Co-ops, as an ice breaker. Students can have a good time, and add new vocabulary to their repertoire. " - Laurie, Chicago, USA
"I used to love reading Agatha Christie when I was younger; it was always so fun paging through her book to see if I could figure out the “whodunit” before she did. In a similar way, this gives our older kids the opportunity to learn how to think without being overwhelming. We definitely need to get more books of this sort. Not only does it teach skills that are desperately needed, but it is so much fun!" - Jennifer, Homeschooling Mom
"The vocabulary work is very intense, and definitely helps to get your student ready for the ACT and Sat tests! For Miss Grace, this book will help her stretch not only her vocabulary, but her reading, as being dyslexic, sounding out new words can be hard, and these are not simple ones! What we did was to have Miss Grace underline the words she didn't know, then go look them up. THEN she attempted to solve the mystery. Some week's mysteries are easier than others! And there was a LOT of discussion with mom, with working out the different clues, when there were opposing clues for the same person. But I really LIKED that aspect - it has helped her reasoning and debate skills! Overall, I have seen how her vocabulary is changing, and she is using the words she has learned, not only correctly, but especially when talking with adults. Her reasoning skills have also improved in a more methodical approach, which I know is from using this workbook!" - Nicole, Bless Their Hearts Mom
"One of the things I love about The Critical Thinking Co. is their dedication to helping their students learn how to think logically. Learning how to use deductive reasoning is a skill that helps each student throughout their life. Critical Thinking Detective Vocabulary Book 2 takes that one step further, adding new vocabulary words taken from the ACT and SAT word lists and more. One of the nice things in this detective book is you don't have to discern truth from lie. All statements made are true. This leaves you with just needing to deduce the culprit. I liked that the cases are reasonably difficult to solve. The vocabulary words are included at the just right amount. Not too many to make it overwhelming, but enough that you need to define them in order to solve the case. " - Annette, Canada
"I found Critical Thinking Detective – Vocabulary Book 2 (Grades 5-12+) to be a good addition to our homeschool routine. Every mystery offers a unique way to review reading comprehension, practice research, and enhance daily vocabulary. Bear, like myself, enjoys being a wordsmith so this book was definitely one of his favorites. He liked solving the mysteries, learning new words, and using them during the week. I also learned quite a bit of new vocabulary while going through the book with him. I suggest this for grades 6 and up, or 4th and 5th graders that are strong readers." - Ta'Neisha Kemp,
"If you're looking to expand your children's vocabulary while challenging them to think critically, take a look at the Critical Thinking Detective - Vocabulary Book 2! Using this resource as a family study, to start a case, one of us - typically me - would read it aloud along with the suspect statements. Then, we'd discuss what each unfamiliar word might mean, having everyone make guesses based on prior knowledge, context, word roots, word use, etc, before I would consult the answer key to give a synonym to help the kids see if the meanings they had guessed were correct. Once we had the vocabulary figured out, we would reread parts of the case, and each of us would conjecture about which suspect was at fault and why we thought so. Then, we'd check our answers. This approach allowed us all to enjoy building vocabulary and using our noggins for critical thinking without being impeded by things that sometimes cause learning to drag here - troubles with dyslexia, balking about having to write, etc. It worked well for us, and we'd recommend our approach to others who want to use this resource without worrying about writing or reading issues. The author did not just choose any old obscure words to focus upon, but, rather, selected ones that students may actually run into in regular life and study. " - Martianne, Training Happy Hearts