Play Forensic Flashlight Tricks

What You Need:

  • Flashlight
  • Smooth surface or floor
  • Small pieces of paper approximately 4” x 4”
  • Camera (optional)
  • Pen or pencil


What You Do:

  1. Find yourself a good-working flashlight with a round stem.
  2. Ask everyone to leave the crime scene!
  3. Move to the entrance of the kitchen and get down on your hands and knees.
  4. Turn off all the lights. The darker the better!
  5. Turn the flashlight on and set it on the floor.
  6. Pivot the flashlight slowly until you see a solid beam of light on the floor.
  7. Everything that is visible in that light is potential evidence! Have your child check for hairs, footprints, stains or anything that seems interesting.
  8. Now take the square pieces of paper and fold each one in half making a tent.
  9. Label each card (A-D) and use them as crime scene markers for your evidence.
  10. Once your markers are in place, take a photo of the scene and prepare for court!

Oblique lighting is a simple technique that uses angles of light to uncover evidence. Try it on any floor or smooth surface and see what you can reveal. Try to locate footwear impressions that match known shoes in the house.

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