The activity the students focused on was learning the differences of what is real and what is dramatized in popular forensic TV shows, these include CSI, Criminal Minds, Law and Order, and more. The students, however, focused on one show called The First 48 and CSI. Andrea said “ we can use an episode of The First 48 and compare it with a CSI episode.” While watching these shows, students gathered around a table, taped down a big white paper and took notes of what actions they believe scientists do in real life, and what they believe are dramatized. Deziraye was the first to comment, “ scrubs are definitely used in real life! How else would scientists protect themselves.” After watching more of the shows, Jaqueze mentioned “how can they use the microscope with barely any lights on. Everything is dark!” After the shows ended, everyone started sharing their opinion. “Do DNA results really come back that fast,” asked April. This was the breaking point. The teens were beginning to apply their knowledge and observational skills to understand the work scientists do. The next activity is to provide a documentary for the teens so they can see exactly how certain evidence gets analyzed, such as a fingerprint or a muddy shirt.
Towards the end of the month, the teens were getting prepared for the end of the program event so they wanted to practice giving speeches! One way we practiced was by learning about one’s and each other’s good and bad traits. After practicing short stories and poems in front of the class Murtada gave constructive criticism to his classmate Jaqueze “ you have a good loud voice, but I think you need to work on giving more eye contact.” Soleil took it a step further and suggested we work on qualities we consider bad, such as talking while someone else is talking, procrastination, etc. So for this exercise everyone had a piece of paper taped to their back. We all wrote positive feedback on everyone’s paper and traits we believed should be improved! This way the teens remember what they need to improve on.