A couple of years ago several families and mine were on vacation at a beach community. It was one of those years when it rained every other day. The kids were itching to do something. They had read all the comic books in the house. They had enough of the board games and this was only a couple of days into a 2 week stay. I was tired of being inside too.
Oh what to do when the air is full of dew?
No sun in sight just clouds and this plight.
My mind did ponder while gazing out yonder.
Finally it hit me quick and quite blunt.
Why not have a Scavenger Hunt?!!!!
This was perfect. I quickly grabbed some paper, pencils, crayons, markers and made a list of things to “find”. Because we were renting it would not be proper to bring everything back to the cottage. So we used cameras and note books. They were to draw, take pictures and bring back 1 item. At the end we had a fun closing activity for all who participate an Ice Cream treat from the Ice Cream fountain, big bowls of popcorn, Hot Chocolate and we talked about what we saw and admired the drawings, the photos and the items brought back.
The Scavenger Hunt has become a vacation staple whether rain or shine there is a Scavenger Hunt time. We play this game 3 or more times during vacation. The age range for our group is from 5 – 17.
1. A Scavenger Hunt is easy to set up and modify depending on age, location, disability, etc.
2. A Camera is very helpful to verify the found item, also it is easier to carry a photo than say a boat. Which permits items to be grand in size.
3. Great activity to get the kids outside and to stimulate their minds.
4. This is how we survived many rainy days on vacation.
Up Next: Supplies
Step 1: Supplies
1. Note Book,
2. Pens, Crayons, Pencils or Markers,
3. Camera. Most kids have a digital camera or cell phone.
4. Bug Repellant and
5. The Scavenger Hunt List.
Time to Complete: 45 – 60 min. 25 min for the Scavenger Hunt while the remaining time is for set up i.e. gather supplies and preparing the food or closing activity.
Up Next: Rules & List
Step 2: Rules & List
1. Kids can work solo or in a group.
2. Kids between the ages of 5 – 7 should have a supervisor (Parent).
3. Draw 4 pictures and location of item, take 5 photos and bring back 1 item and
4. Set a time limit or a set number of items. I use 10 items to hunt for which takes about 25 mins, but you could have a time limit with a lot of items to hunt and the scavengers find as many as they can.
The design of the List should look something like:
1. Make the List age appropriate that is for the younger kids write out the item “Seagull”.
2. For the older kids use Brain Teasers,
a. “What flies and dives, passing time while squawking “Mine, Mine, Mine”.
b. Write the items backwards; llugaes,
c. Mix the letters up; gualles,
d. Take a gander at describing the item in pictures i.e. Pictionary or its TV predecessor Concentration.
3. Choose 1 item that is small for them to bring back. i.e. Pine cone, feather, seashell, etc.
Up Next: Brain Teasers
Step 3: Brain Teasers
Here are some examples of Brain Teasers to use for older youths.
1. What flies and dives, passing time while squawking; “Mine, Mine, Mine”. A Seagull
2. I can be blue. I can be gray. You see me every day. In summer, spring, winter, or fall. I never go away. The Sky
3. Blue and black, red and yellow. Sometimes wild, sometimes mellow. What am I? The Sky
4. I'm white, I'm round, but not always around. Sometimes you see me, sometimes you don't. What am I? The Moon
5. My life can be measured in hours. I serve by being devoured. Thin, I am quick; fat, I am slow. Wind is my foe. What am I? A Candle
6. When cold I am solid, When warm I melt, You sometimes smell me or not at all and always being light to darkness. What am I? A Candle
7. What becomes wet when used but is dry most of the time? A Towel
8. I build up castles. I tear down mountains. I make some humans blind and help others see. What am I? Sand
9. I am like dreams floating, sometimes I am there sometimes I am gone, I can be white or dark black. What am I? A Cloud
10. Long ago, I was used to converse in a very simple way. Nowadays, I can be used to tickle away! What am I? A Feather
11. Before I grow I'm small. When I'm old I grow tall. When I die I give a mighty fall. What am I? A Tree
12. The more you take from me the more of me there is. A Hole
13. What goes into water black and comes out red? A Lobster
Up Next: Observations and Summary
Step 4: Observations & Summary
This is truly a fun outside summer activity. Great tool to use as a teaching exercise.
If someone would rather not hunt offer that they take pictures of those who are hunting.
Walk around the area to find unusual items to be found. Nothing is too unusual or big when you have a camera.
When someone guesses incorrectly on the Brain Teasers, it is OK to give a hint.
The kids are continually satisfied and excited with this activity.
Then I saw, and considered it well. I looked upon it, and received instruction..