The mystery of the sand

This lesson is based around a ‘teacher-less task’, a lateral thinking puzzle where students have to work together to first sequence a story and then solve a puzzle.

The lesson should help to develop lateral thinking skills (a creative way of thinking which is often considered to be part of critical thinking), improve co-operation between students and provide plenty of speaking practice as well as focusing on sequencers.


  • To develop students’ critical thinking skills, specifically lateral thinking.
  • To encourage students to work co-operatively as a group.
  • To raise awareness of linkers, especially time reference.


Teenagers and adults


CEF level B2 and above


50 - 60 minutes


The lesson plan and student worksheets can be downloaded below in PDF format.

Language Level


Submitted by magnificat on Fri, 11/18/2016 - 22:37


Thank you! I love it and I'll definitely use it! :) It's very clever, because if you want to know the answer, you need to read the Teacher's notes carefully. :) Thank you, Cath, for help! :)))

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