Scavenger hunts have remained as long-standing popular activities for children. Not only are they simple, inexpensive and fun distractions, but they also encourage kids to interact with their environment and practice problem solving. Get them moving and thinking with these easy, creative scavenger hunt ideas.
The Alphabet Hunt
Grab a sheet of paper and write down the alphabet. Challenge your kids to find objects around the house that start with each letter. They can either collect the items and put them in one spot or, if you’d rather not have a gigantic pile of 26 random objects on your floor, have them write down the object next to the letter.
The Sensory Hunt
Encourage sensory exploration by creating a scavenger hunt where kids can touch, see, taste, hear and smell. Challenges can include finding items that feel soft, bumpy or squishy, or that make noise, smell nice, taste good, are heavy, are bright or can move.
The Color Hunt
Help your little ones learn their colors with this simple scavenger hunt. Take an array of markers and draw colorful boxes on a sheet of paper with the name of the color underneath, then have your kids find an object to match each color. As an added challenge, use different shades of the same color and encourage your kids to explore items with different hues.
The Exercise Hunt
This activity is a great way for your kids to have fun and get active. Take eight to 10 index cards and write different exercises on each, such as do 10 jumping jacks, jog in place for 15 seconds,
perform five pushups and dance for 30 seconds. Place the cards around the room where they can be easily seen. Split your children into teams and give them a card with the exercises in a specific order. Have them find the exercise cards in the order printed on their card and complete the exercise. You can make this activity a competition to see who can complete all of their exercises first and offer a prize as an incentive.
The State Hunt
Break out the maps for this scavenger hunt. Create a list of geography-based questions about the 50 states and encourage your child to explore our nation. For example, ask kids to find a state that is next to the Pacific Ocean, a state surrounded by other states on all sides, a state that borders another country, a state that starts with a specific letter, a state next to one of the Great Lakes or a state made up of islands.
The Gratitude Hunt
With this hunt, children can find items to be grateful for and discover what makes them happy. Ask your kids to find items that they like to wear, enjoy playing with, are useful to them, good for giving as gifts to someone else, make them laugh, reflect beauty and remind them of their friends and family or a place that they like to visit.
This article originally appeared in the January 2021 edition of Baltimore’s Child, a sister publication of Frederick’s Child.