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Spotlight on Strategies:Can you guess my 2-1-4?

Gather two facts, one clue and four images about a topic. Present them one at a time, asking students to discuss and predict what they think the topic is, explaining their reasoning.

Big idea

This strategy began with a holiday by a teacher (once modelled this could also be initiated by students), who had gathered information about the location. Students used the clues to figure out where in the world they had travelled to. Two facts are provided, one clue, and four pictures (2-1-4). This strategy can work as a hook for students, linking the materials (facts, clues and pictures) to a learning objective or unit of study.

Overview of strategy



facts, images and clues about a topic your class is studying

  1. Gather two facts, one clue, and four images about a topic your class is studying.
  2. Present the facts to students one at a time.
  3. Have students discuss the facts and make predictions about what the topic might be.
  4. Move on and share the clue. Ask students to refine their predictions based on the new information they have.
  5. Finally, share images. You could do this one by one, or all at once.
  6. Ask students to share their predictions in small groups, and then share with the class, providing justification for their predictions.

The images and clues you present to your students will help them learn how to make evidence-based inferences, leading them to logical conclusions about what they're learning.

Sum it up

This strategy uses the idea of detecting with a variety of material for students to work out locations, characters and more. 

More ideas

Have students create their own 2-1-4 based on content they are learning or on topics in which they are interested.

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