Objective: Students will play a game where they try to solve a water mystery.

Materials: What Happened to Wendy Water game board, six laminated problem pictures, 1 die, 1 set of illustrated cards that includes a card for each of: 6 suspects, 6 problems, 10 lakes, detective notes (one per student), six colored tokens representing the mystery suspects: red - Big Sue River, purple - Leslie Lake, green - Gerald Ground-Water III, blue - Sam Slough, orange - Charles Creek, yellow - Priscilla Pond, pencil

Background: This game will encourage student to use their powers of deduction when they try to answer three questions: Who is hurting Wendy Water?, Where is it happening?, and How is it being done?.

There are over 204,000 acres of lakes, reservoirs and ponds in the State of South Dakota. Many of them are polluted, have unhealthy water quality or do not support the wildlife population around it. While playing this game, students will learn there are several problems that can adversely affect Wendy Water.

This game is played like the game "Clue".

Preparation: Place all the colored tokens on the starting squares marked with the corresponding colored box. All six colored tokens are placed on the board regardless of the number of players. Place each of the Problem Picture cutouts in the center of the board with Wendy Water. Give each Water Detective a Detective Note sheet.

Arranging the cards: Sort the pack of cards into three groups - Lake cards, Problem cards, and Suspect cards. Shuffle each of these three groups separately. Take the top card from each group and place it, face down, underneath one corner of the board (you can place the card in an envelope if you have one available). This should be done carefully so that no player knows any of the three cards (one Lakes, one Problems, and one Suspects) placed under the corner of the board.

Dealing the cards: The remaining cards in the three piles are now thoroughly mixed together and shuffled, and then are dealt, one at a time, clockwise around the table to each player. It is important that no player shall see any of the cards while they are being shuffled and dealt. Some players may receive more cards than others. Each player holds the cards dealt him/her, taking care that no other player sees the cards in his/her hand.

Start: Each player takes the colored token nearest to him/her on the board, and uses it throughout the game. The player having the red token, Big Sue River, tolls the die and moves first. After Big Sue River has moved, the next player on the left rolls the die and moves. Each of the other players follows in turn. In succeeding games players should take turns, dealing and starting.

Movement of tokens: Players to reach a lake may move their tokens on the blue squares anywhere on the board according to the throw of the die. All the blue squares on the board are for the movement of tokens. Tokens can move forward, backwards, or crosswise, but NEVER DIAGONALLY. A token may be moved forward and crosswise on the same turn, but it cannot move to a particular space twice in the same turn. No two tokens may occupy any one square, nor may a player move his/her token through a square occupied by another token. A lake, however, may be occupied by any number of tokens and problems.

Entering into a lake: There are three ways of entering a lake: 1) Throwing the die and moving your token along the squares entering through a boat dock, 2) scuba diving by swimming across the board, corner to corner, without using the die, and 3) a player's token may be placed in a lake by another player in the feature play known as "the Suggestion". THE EXCEPTION: At Crooked Lake, players may enter the lake through the shoreline squares, in addition to the boat dock. If the space on the boat dock is occupied by the token of one player, no other player may enter the lake from that boat dock.

Getting out of the lake: There are three ways of leaving a lake: 1) By throwing the die and moving out through a boat dock onto the squares, heading toward another lake of your choice, 2) scuba diving into another lake, and finally 3) by being transferred to another lake by some other player. THE EXCEPTION: At Crooked Lake, players may exit the lake through the shoreline squares, in addition to the boat dock. On the throw of the die, players may enter lakes by the boat docks only, but cannot leave the lake on the same turn; entering the lake ends the move. It is not necessary to throw the exact number to enter the lake. That is, if a player needs 4 to bring him/her into the lake and throws 6, he/she ignores the last two units after entering the lake. Player already in the lake may leave it by any boat dock - using the die as usual and moving toward another lake - or they may scuba dive, if in a corner lake. The boat docks of each lake are not counted as a square.

The "Suggestion": Whenever a player moves into a lake, he/she should make a "Suggestion". A "Suggestion" consists of naming a Suspect, a Problem, and the Lake into which the player has moved. As soon as a player makes a suggestion the token of the Suspect named and the Problem (cutout) are brought into the lake named in the suggestion. No player may forfeit a turn to remain in particular lake. Players must move by a throw of the dice or by scuba diving. An example: The player representing Big Sue River may, in two moves, reach Oakwood Lake. Big Sue may then call a Suspect into Oakwood Lake (for example Charles Creek) and move the orange token into Oakwood Lake. She will also suggest the Fertilizer is the Problem (moving the Fertilizer cutout into Oakwood Lake) and will say "I suggest that Wendy was hurt at Oakwood Lake by Charles Creek using too much Fertilizer". Note: All tokens, spare ones as well as players' own tokens, fall under equal suspicion and should be considered by players making "Suggestions".

Proving the suggestion true or false: When a "Suggestion" has been made, the first player to the left of the one making the "Suggestion" examines his/her cards to see if he/she is able to prove the "Suggestion" false. To disprove the "Suggestion" he/she must hold one or more of the cards named. (In our example above, the cards named are Charles Creek, Fertilizer and Oakwood Lake). If he/she holds one or more of these cards, he/she must show ONE ONLY to the player making the "Suggestion". This must be done without the other players seeing the card shown. If Big Sue River holds in her own hand one or more of these cards, perhaps the Oakwood Lake and Charles Creek, she may discover whether some other player has Fertilizer or if it is hidden in the envelope. A smart player will often deliberately make a "Suggestion" naming one or two cards that he/she holds in his/her hand just to gain information or to mislead the other players. If the first player to the left does not have any of the three cards, then the next player at his/her left examines his/her cards and must show one of the three if he/she has it. A player having more than one of the called cards may show whichever one he/she wishes, but only one. Obviously if any player holds in his/her hand one or more of the 3 cards named in the "Suggestion", it is proof that those particular cards are not in the envelope. Therefore, when a card is shown to the player who made the "Suggestion", his/her "Suggestion" has thus been proved to be false, and he/she may wish to make a note of this on his/her Detective Notes.

Accusation: When a player is satisfied that he/she knows the three cards hidden under the corner of the board (or in an envelope), he/she can on his/her turn, make an Accusation. He/She states that he/she is making an Accusation and names the three cards he/she believes to be in the envelope. Then, carefully, so that the other players do not see, he/she looks at the three cards in the envelope. Contrary to the rules for making a suggestion, a player may make an accusation whether or not his/her piece is in the lake he/she mentions.

Winning the game: If the Accusation is correct, that is, if the player finds in the envelope those 3 cards that he/she just named, he/she lays the cards face up on the table and is the winner. If the Accusation is incorrect, the player returns the 3 cards to the envelope, unseen by any other player, and replaces it under the corner of the board. Having made a false Accusation, he/she has no further moves in the game, and cannot win, but remains as a player to contradict suggestions made by other players with the cards he/she holds in his/her hand. However, if the player's token is resting on the space before a boat dock, he/she must move this token into the lake so that it will not block the boat dock. From there it would be available for other players to move into other lakes in order to make suggestions. A player can make only one Accusation during any one game.

Other Notes:
Scuba Diving: scuba diving passages are shown in the corner lakes. Scuba diving allows players to move between opposite corner lakes in one move. This can be done on a player's turn without throwing the die merely by moving his/her token to the opposite corner lake and announcing that he/she is going scuba diving. A "Suggestion" may be made after this move.

A lake named in a "Suggestion" must always be the one into which the suggestion player's own token has been moved.

A player may make only one "Suggestion" after entering a lake, and may not make another until entering another lake or else, using at least TWO TURNS, leaving and the re-entering the same lake.

Tokens transferred to a lake as the result of a "Suggestion" are not returned to their original positions on the board. To leave a lake in which his/her token has been placed by a "Suggestion", a player on his/her next turn uses either the throw of the die or if in a corner lake, he/she can scuba dive.

If a token is moved into a lake by a "Suggestion", the player who owns the token may, on his/her next turn, make a "Suggestion" of his/her own for that lake. For this turn he/she does not throw the die or move his/her token.

Although there is no requirement or rule on how players should use the Detective Notes sheet, it is suggested that the best and easiest way to play the game is to check off items on the Notes sheet as they become known and using the initials of the player showing the card. Some players prefer to check off the names of the cards dealt to them at the beginning of each game.

Grade Level:

Subject Areas:
Social Studies, Science, Reading

SD Standards for 4th grade:
Social Studies


4.R.1.1; 4.R.1.2


Observation, Prediction, Interpreting, Problem Solving

Prior Preparation: Laminate the game board, all the illustrated cards, and the problem picture cutouts. Cut apart the illustrated cards to form decks - one deck for suspects, one for problems and one for lakes. Carefully cut apart the problem picture cutouts to be used during the game. Make copies of the Detective Note sheets and cut in half.

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