Are you looking for new ideas for getting your kids outside? Nature scavenger hunts are an easy and fun way to get outdoors and explore nature.
Many of you may have done a nature scavenger hunt or two in the past. But the ideas below are not your traditional “look for an acorn” hunt. These ideas will have your kids thinking critically about the world around them and looking at nature in a whole new way!
Let’s spice up our scavenger hunts with these new and engaging ideas!
Rainbow Scavenger Hunt
Have your kids go outside with a camera and take photos of things in nature that are the colors of the rainbow: ROYGBIV. Whoever finds the nature rainbow first wins!
Leaf Scavenger Hunt
See how many different types of leaves your kids can find outside. This is a great activity for teaching about biodiversity because it will help them understand how many different plants there are in your area. It will also help them to pay a little more attention to different leaf shapes and designs. You could have prizes for the kid with the biggest leaf, smallest leaf, leaf with the most lobes, leaf that’s the brightest green, and so on.
Texture Scavenger Hunt
Have your kids look for different textures outside. And either collect the nature items in a bucket or take photos of the textures. Here are some textures to get them started: smooth, rough, bumpy, grainy, soft, fluffy, slippery, silky. Whoever finds the most wins!
Seed Scavenger Hunt
This is a fun and easy activity to do in the summer and fall. Have your kids go outside and find as many different kinds of seeds as possible. Send them with a small bucket so they can collect them. You could have prizes for the kid with the most different seed types, the biggest seed, smallest seed, and so on. You could even talk to them about how seed structure determines how they disperse in nature!
ABCs Scavenger Hunt
On your next family walk, try this fun and engaging activity! All you need is a blank sheet of paper and a pencil. Have your kids write the letters of the alphabet down the page. As you walk, they’ll look for names that start with the letter and write it down on their list. Whoever gets all 26 letters first wins!
Where should I go to do a nature scavenger hunt?
You can do these scavenger hunt themes anywhere in nature. It could be in your backyard, your neighborhood, a local park, or a hiking trail.
Enjoy these activities with your kids! Post a picture of your scavenger hunt in the comments below or tag us on social media!
For other outdoor ideas try one of these:
Originally published March 2020.
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