We’re deep into winter, and chances are you’re probably running out of creative family activities to do inside. And while you’re trying to balance work, helping your kids with school, and more, creating fun new plans might get pushed down on your to-do list.
While there’s nothing wrong with a good movie every once in a while, it’s beneficial for the whole family to get out and get active. With more exercise and active play, your kids will be worn out for an early bedtime.
You might be wondering what magical activity I’m speaking of that covers just about all these perks.
It’s simple–a scavenger hunt!
Think back to the first scavenger hunt you ever went on when you were a kid. The mystery, the exploration, and the healthy dose of competition between your friends might come to mind.
Why not share that timeless joy with your kids this winter?
Try out one of these exciting and creative winter scavenger hunts, and get ready to make some treasured memories for years to come.
Sensory Play Scavenger Hunt For Ages 2-4
Sensory play is play that incorporates all 5 senses. It’s a crucial component of learning for kids of all ages, especially early childhood.
When your kids use all their senses in play, they’re using multiple parts of their brain. Doing so can both aide in their ability to process information and help them develop better motor skills.
For young children and those with sensory processing disorders like Asperger’s or ADHD, sensory activities can help them better manage high-stress scenarios. Instead of being caught up in the chaos around them like a loud classroom or walking by a construction site, focusing on one sensory item like listening to a song or playing with clay can help them “tune out” what’s bothering them.
This practice trains their mind to get better and better at managing sensory overload in the future.
Your kids can practice sensory play and mindfulness with a relaxing winter nature hunt.
First, print this downloadable guide that includes finding things with their different senses. For example, for sight, it lists things like berries, seed pods, and clouds. Next, kids can listen for birds chirping and feel a tree or pinecone.
The only category missing is taste, which you’ll probably be thankful for (especially if you have a toddler).
Feel free to adjust the list as needed. Perhaps you don’t have the sounds of birds chirping that day, so you can replace this item with the sound of the church bells down the street, or a dog barking at the park.
Before you go on your scavenger hunt, talk to your kids about the 5 senses. Ask them to name some things you might see, smell, and hear outside.
As you seek the items on the guide, take pictures so that afterwards you can recap your wonderful sensory exploration together.
Indoor Scavenger Hunt For Ages 4-6
Some days, venturing outside just isn’t possible — especially in the winter.
An indoor scavenger hunt is the perfect remedy when you need the kids to take a break from screen time, but can’t quite justify coaxing them to play outside.
The best remedy? A stay-at-home scavenger hunt that’s easy to prep and fun to do!
This activity is best for ages 4-6, although younger and older ages may be able to adapt the hunt to their liking.
Simply make a list of defining characteristics and other clues about items around the house. Instead of saying “a drawer,” try to add some mystery and phrase it as “something that slides open.”
Other items can call for deeper exploration and further activities. For example, “something that floats” can turn into a science experiment on floating vs. sinking!
If you’re in a time crunch, you can download this tried-and-true list that’s already prepped for you.
Movement Scavenger Hunt
Movement is important for your kids. Exercising every day releases chemicals in their brain that improve their mood and focus— 2 key components of healthy development and staying on top of their grades at school.
Learning how their bodies work and pushing themselves to new limits can also help build confidence. This is a handy trait for their social life, academics, and chasing their dreams in general.
Exercise can also help build your children’s balance and motor skills. And better balance can mean less injuries!
Incorporate the joy of exercise with some brain-building thanks to a movement scavenger hunt.
To try and prevent any damage to your home, this special hunt will preferably take place outside. But it’s no biggie if you end up trying it inside, too— just hide the vases and fragile items!
This time, you’ll make a list of actions for your children to match with an object. Some fun ones include “find something to squish” or “find something to balance on your head.”
List about 10-15 items, then set a 5-minute timer to encourage them to keep up the pace.
After the Scavenger Hunt
Chances are, once you try out one or all of these fun scavenger hunts, you and the kids will be amped for more fun ways to learn and play!
Sign them up for one of our classes. Whether it’s dance, gymnastics, or NinjaZone, every class is packed with learning and physical development. Most importantly, they’re all a blast!
Chat with your kids about a class they’d enjoy exploring, then take a moment to sign up for an exciting new way to play. Sign up today >