Rigorous academics doesn’t mean boring! 5th graders at East Point Academy enjoyed solving the Case of the Missing Llama as part of their unit on multiple perspectives. Teacher Rachel Haltiwanger came up with the project last year because November is “…a time in the semester when student engagement goes down.” The project involves a class Llama decoration going missing. Students then follow a series of clues hidden around the school. Delivered to the student “agents” by various staff members, each clue is either a primary or secondary source. It’s the students’ job to determine what source type each clue is as they work together to put the pieces together and find the Llama.

The Case of the Missing LLama helped us to learn the basics of primary and secondary sources because it is a memorable lesson” said 5th grader Harmoni Wilkins who enjoyed the learning experience. Current 6th grader Lucy Webb equally enjoyed the activity last year saying “It really helped me learn the material by reading what the llama left us. It was definitely a memorable experience for me!” “It was so fun and interactive!” echoed student Joshua Perez. “It was the highlight of my week. It also helped me get an understanding of the 2 types of sources.”

“This activity provides a space for my students to be excited about what they are learning,” expanded Haltiwanger. “They are put through an inquiry process by using a hands-on learning experience. When I give assessments on primary and secondary sources, I see grades skyrocket because the students are able to connect their learning to an experience.

East Point Academy is a highly rated Mandarin Immersion free Public Charter School that provides rigorous academics with a global focus to students from four-year-old kindergarten to eighth grade. It was named the “Best” Charter School by the FreeTimes and State Newspaper. East Point Academy has limited openings in grades 4th & 5th for the remainder of the 2021/2022 school year. To learn more, visit www.eastpointsc.org or to schedule a tour call (803) 926-5180.