Detective Academy

Happy Friday Camp families! This week was Detective Academy at camp and we learned all about crime scenes and forensics. On Monday we learned about crime scene basics. Campers started the day by investigating the other campers in their group. They had to figure out who was who based on some of their favorite things.

Campers started the day by drawing out a crime scene in one of our labs. They took note of any evidence they saw and made sure to document before they started to collect evidence. They then got to collect the evidence!

Later campers practiced their observation skills to see if they could find all the differences at the lower level lobby desk.

Campers ended the day by breaking code in the community room!


On Tuesday the Red and Yellow groups went on a trip to the University of Michigan Police Station while the Blue and Orange groups were visited by a police officer at the museum! At the police station, Red and Yellow group learned about the importance of taking notes and learned how to make an evidence bag out of paper!

Then they participated in three activities that real crime scene investigators do. At one station campers used a black light to look for fluids on clothing. At the next station, campers practiced swabbing evidence and the importance of documenting evidence. At the last station, campers practiced dusting and lifting fingerprints!

Back at the museum Blue and Yellow group were visited Officer Marty! He talked to the campers about some of the gear he wears and what he does as a police officer. After he took the campers outside to show them his police car!

After the visit Blue and Yellow made their own police hats to take home!

To finish the day the younger groups did a scavenger hunt around the museum where they had to break code, go through “laser beams” and do an police agility course!


On Wednesday, campers learned about impression evidence. They analyzed impressions and solved mysteries. In the community room campers looked at impressions of screwdrivers to find out which screwdriver was used in a break in. They then used lip impressions to solve the case of the missing money! (It ended up being McKenzie our Assistant Director!)

Later, campers learned about footprints and used impressions to figure out what happened at a scene of the crime!



The focus on Wednesday was physical evidence and fingerprints! Campers began the day by going over a brief physical evidence power-point to learn the basics. After this, they solved the case of the missing bones! They got some help from our skeleton!

Later, campers learned about the different features fingerprints. The campers used stereoscopes to look at fingerprints and then they got to make their own fingerprints and look at them!


On Friday campers solved a mock crime! The older groups, Red and Yellow, solved the crime of who posioned the museum staff members, while the younger groups, Blue and Orange, solved the case of the missing rocket ship! The older campers went to three different crime scenes to collect evidence and they found that our three museum staff members, Craig, Kira and Tim, were killed by poisoned candy! The campers drew the scenes and collected evidence and took it upstairs to our “crime lab” to analyze.

Then they questioned our four suspects and a witness. They used this information to come to the conclusion that Lori, our communications director, poisoned the candy because Lori was feeling pressured to increase the publicity of the museum and felt that any news would be good for the museum!

Suspect #1 Nathan
Suspect #2 Nora 










Suspect #3 Jeanna
Suspect #4 Lori










The younger groups worked together to try and figure out who stole the rocket ship which we usually leave in the community room. The campers sketched out their crime scene and collected evidence.

Then the campers got to interview their witness Kevin. He helped them out by telling them that he heard a man’s voice coming from the community room around the time of theft.

The campers then went up to the “crime lab” to analyze their evidence. After they analyzed and talked it over, the campers came to the conclusion that Matt, the planetarium operator, stole the rocket ship!

Of course our camp principal, Brittany, called the UM police department to let them know what the campers learned!


We hope your camper had as much fun as we did solving mysteries!