Let’s go on a scavenger hunt! You can stay in your own home or backyard or go on an even bigger adventure outside. Once you’ve gathered your items, there are so many creative things you can do. Thank you to teaching artist Heather Hughes for working on this fun activity guide with us.
- A container to gather your items – We suggest using an egg crate to gather smaller items or a shopping bag for larger items.
- Sharp eyes and a good imagination
- Pick a theme. For example, you might be on a hunt for all red items, things relating to animals, items that you can make music with – anything you want as long as they fit in the container you’ve chosen.
- Gather your items. Your goal is to fill your egg crate (or another container) with your findings, so be on the lookout for 12-18 items.
- Decorate your container. Once you’ve created your theme, you can decorate your container accordingly or get a small piece of paper, like a blank index card, and decorate it with your theme. Then you can make different cards for each hunt and reuse your container!
Time to hunt!
Once you’re prepped, you’re ready to hunt! Have fun deciding where your scavenger hunt will occur. Make it trickier by setting a very specific hunting location, for example, the kitchen or the hall closet. Or go on an even bigger adventure by extending the hunt to a large open space like on a hike or in your neighborhood. Hunts can be silly or educational depending on the goal and/or who’s participating.
Take Your Hunt Further
- If you have more than one person, you could take turns hiding things for the other.
- Skip pre-planning and go on a nature-based hunt while on a walk – grab whatever inspires you.
- Try a “rainbow” hunt – First looking for red items, then orange, then yellow, etc., then when you finish, set them all up as a rainbow on the floor or a table.
Make it Art
Find different ways to bring art into your scavenger hunt.
Music: Preschool – Elementary
Choose one or more of your items and think about it. What texture is it? Is it light or heavy? How does it’s color make you feel? Then find a piece of music that feels the same way to you as your item. Or, do the opposite! Listen to a piece of music and choose which of your found items most closely matches how the music makes you feel.
Visual Art: Toddlers – Elementary
Found Item Collage: Glue your items to paper or arrange items without glue to create a changeable collage.
Visual Art: Preschool – Elementary
- Place or glue your items on paper to turn them into a new object. For example, three rocks could be stacked and colored to look like traffic lights.
- Draw a blank face on a paper and use your items to make the facial features, hair, shirt, etc. Grass ponytail anyone?
With chalk, draw a shape on the ground that fits your theme. For example, if you did a nature hunt, draw the shape of a flower or tree on the ground, as big as you have room for. After you’ve completed your hunt, fill it in with your found objects.
Theater: Preschool – Elementary
- Use your found items to create an imaginary world and describe the character that might live in it.
- For example, if you did a hunt based on a particular color, like red, decide what character or characters might live in an all-red world. Maybe a lava queen, a crab, or a turtle who looks different than the rest of their family?
Theater: Elementary & Up
Create a Story
Use your items to inspire a written story, play, or monologue. There are many ways to have fun with this:
- Expand on the imaginary characters activity above. Write-out a character study that tells us all about that character – what they look like, what their childhood was like, how they act, their favorite music, etc. Create a monologue for that character or a scene about them interacting in their made-up world.
- Place your items in a line in random order. The items must appear in your story or poem in this order.
Listen to this playlist with orchestra music that is about going on adventures, from sailing the oceans to climbing a mountain.