How To Teach Super Simple Songs

How To Teach Mystery Box

Caitie is sharing tips for using the preschool song “Mystery Box” in the classroom and at home for lots of fun learning with little ones. She has lots of great ideas! And she’ll lead us through the song using gestures – an excellent way to introduce a song to children. “Mystery Box” is a super fun song with a built-in game, great for interacting with kids and introducing new items.

Try these ideas in the classroom or at home!

  • Mystery Box is a great way to introduce new topics to your students or to review older topics in a fun and engaging way.
  • A mystery box can be any kind of container you can place something inside, even a bag! You can decorate it or leave it plain. It might be a fun activity to have your students help decorate the mystery box!
  • The mystery and excitement will come from singing the song and how you interact with it. The more fun you have with the mystery box, the more interested your students will be!
  • When you first bring out the mystery box, introduce it to your students and sing the song. Then once they are familiar with it, anytime you bring out the box, they will know it’s time to sing the mystery box song and they’ll get excited for the reveal. When you reveal an item, no matter what it is, it’s really fun to pretend to be surprised by it. Before you reveal it, take a peek into the box, and then quickly close it and act surprised. This will make your students super engaged in the reveal and it will be a lot more fun. Then reveal the item slowly, making some silly sounds and faces of excitement.
  • Try placing the mystery box in the middle of the circle and have students clap their hands on their legs to make a rhythm and everyone sings together, “mystery box, mystery box. What’s inside the mystery box?” before opening together.
  • Depending on the item in the box you can give it a shake and have your students guess what is inside. Or after pretending to take a little peek inside, give them some verbal clues and see if they can guess. For a fun variation, cut a small hole on one side of the mystery box and have your students take turns putting their hand inside to feel what is in the box to guess.
  • You can also have your students reveal the item. After singing the song, pick a student to open the box. Hand them the box or have them come up to the front to take the special item out, and show it to everyone.
  • The great thing about mystery box is you can use it to introduce so many different things. Anything at all really, that can fit in a box. You can use real life items or simply use flashcards. You can introduce new vocabulary words, a new theme for the day, or a new topic that you will learn about. You can reveal different colored items to review colors, you can reveal a bunch of different items and then count them all, or reveal an item related to a song and that can lead into a sing along. It’s a great way to add some fun and mystery to an otherwise simple lesson.
  • At home, the mystery box can be used to try to get little ones interested in something they aren’t that excited about. For example, you can bring out the mystery box, get all excited about what is inside, have them guess what it could be, and then pull out something like a toothbrush that they can use to brush their teeth. It’s a simple way to bring some fun to a task or chore that they don’t always enjoy.