Give your science lessons a real-life application with forensic science experiments that place your students at the center of a crime scene. Through crime scene reproductions, students will learn how to collect and perform analyses of evidence, record their findings, and use critical thinking to find the culprit. Whether it’s for a biology or physics curriculum unit, you can adapt these crime scene scenarios for an interactive, amazing class!
1. Crime Scene Printables
Give your students the tools they need to become crime scene investigators with this crime scene activity pack. It contains printable evidence, information sheets, and worksheets for students to complete. Perfect for any beginner’s forensics class!
Learn more: ViaNova Learning Resources
2. Types of Fingerprints
Learn how to identify the unique features of fingerprints with this clue game. Have students decode the fingerprints in class to see how well they understand the material. Print out extra fingerprints for evidence collection at burglary scenes in your class.
Learn more: Making Friends
3. My Fingerprints
This fingerprinting activity is a favorite with kids. Help them properly ink their fingers and then roll out their prints and let them uncover their arches, loops, and whorls! Add family members to compare and contrast prints in a genetics lesson.
Learn more: Tricia Stohr-Hunt
4. Dust for Fingerprints
Search the scene for latent fingerprints with some baby powder, a brush, and tape. Carefully apply the powder to the brush and let your kids dust crime scene surfaces. When they find a print, help them lift it with tape to find the culprit.
Learn more: KCEdventures
5. Shoe Print Detective
Pay attention to details! This easy activity is great for elementary students. Students need to pay close attention to details to find matching shoe prints. Cut out the shoe prints to create a mix-and-match card version of the assignment.
Learn more: Activity Village
6. Forensic Fairytales
Add a touch of magic to your crime scene investigation activity. Take students outside to conduct crime scene searches in this non-traditional classroom crime lab. Be sure to go over crime scene protocols before they begin evidence collection to prevent cross-contamination and evidence tampering.
Learn more: Edgy Instruction
7. Forensic Trivia Quizzes
Test your students’ forensic science knowledge with these quick, digital quizzes! They cover everything from the basic principles of forensics to body farms and cadaver decomposition. Use them in a series of lessons or combine them for an end-of-unit test. The quizzes can be timed for a more challenging assignment.
Learn more: Fun Trivia
8. CSI Web Adventure
Go digital with your crime scene simulations. This website provides teacher instructions and at-home guides to help build your own crime scene ideas. Easy-to-follow demo videos and links to historic crimes are perfect for keeping students engaged with your lessons and for distance learning.
Learn more: CSI Web Adventures
Test for chemical evidence with this easy lab activity. Grab 3 different brands of black markers. Write a note with one and then swipe all three on different pieces of coffee filters. Dip them in water and see how the ink separates to determine which pen wrote the message!
Learn more: Our Family Code
10. DNA Bracelets
Add a cute craft to your forensic science experiments. After you discuss DNA evidence, have students create a bracelet representing their genes! As they thread their genes together, discuss DNA molecule structures and how scientists use them in a crime lab analysis.
Learn more: Pragmatic Mom
11. Introduction to Forensics
This fun book follows Officer Dan as he searches for clues. Written by a former police officer, it’s informative and fun! Have students read the book to learn the basics of forensic evidence while they search photos for clues from a burglary.
Learn more: Amazon
12. Character Autopsy
Create a literary medical emergency in your classroom! Instead of dissecting a body, have them dissect a character from their favorite book. They’ll need to mark the character’s external characteristics, personality traits, conflicts that will leave “scars”, and any symbols that represent them.
Learn more: Study All Knight
13. Blood Splatter Lab
Grab some fake blood and paint the scene red! This activity is designed to help students determine the murder weapon, velocities, angles, and impact of the splatters. A unique way to teach kitchen safety topics like knife safety.
Learn more: The Learning Hypothesis
14. Crime Scene Models
Instead of having students examine crime scenes, let them recreate one! Give them a collection of evidence with information about the victim, setting, and witness statements. Then see if they can correctly reconstruct the scene to identify the perpetrator.
Learn more: Science of Curiosity
15. Video Worksheets
These digital videos introduce students to the FBI and the array of work it does. It shows how the FBI works with local law enforcement to track down criminals. The included worksheets make sure they’re paying attention. Geared towards high school students.
Learn more: STEM Teacher Inspiration
Add a crime scene simulation to your physics class! Kinematic equations are used to find the velocity of an object. Use these worksheets to examine evidence from your mock crime scenes. Simply follow the clues and solve the physics equations to find the criminal.
Learn more: Passionately Curioussci
17. Crime Scene Sketches
Put your students’ art skills to the test. When they enter your mock crime scenes, have learners create a sketch of what they see. Make sure they pay attention to the details. Have them come back later to see if the scene has been tampered with!
Learn more: Flickr
18. Interactive Digital Autopsy
This activity is for older students due to its graphic nature. Students click along as the program leads them through a digital human autopsy. Each step of the process is explained; allowing students to better understand how evidence is collected.
Learn more: Australian Museum