I remember my first treasure hunt. I was 4 years old. I followed simple clues, and a path on the floor to the treasure hidden in our kitchen oven. It was play money, the best ever!
I wanted the precious hooligans in my life to experience a memorable treasure hunt too. So I researched, wrote, designed, prepared, shopped…for weeks. The end result was a pretty cool kids party, enjoyed by a 3, 5, 7, and 10-year-old!
I thought, why let all that work benefit just my family ~ why not share it with your family? So here is my Kid’s Party Guide to Mastering the Safari Treasure Hunt.
I’ve outlined all the steps I took. I’ve also provided an opportunity at the end of this post to access free PDF printables for download.
What You Need
Costumes or Props
I created a fun Invitation / Welcome Banner.
I downloaded a free image, then uploaded that to a design program similar to PicMonkey to create the overlay that I wanted. I made the image 8 1/2 x 11 for standard printing. And wallah! You now have an invitation for each child.
I also taped one to the front door.
Now you may decide to do something a little more extravagant, especially if a lot of kids are involved. Since it was an indoor party in the middle of winter with just my girls and my nephews, we kept it simple.
I planned on using Safari music from my Baby Einstein: Wild Animal Safari CD. They created their own wild animal noises during the hunt, but music was a good way to set the tone and get them excited! 🙂
I went to the Dollar Store and found the props, their “gear”, for the hunt. You could also use items you have around your house.
- Safari hats
- Walkie Talkie
The clues were the most difficult, and most time-consuming part of the preparation. Yet, they were also the most fun for me to do.
I again found free images. I chose various animals you’d find on the African Savannah. I then uploaded each image onto a template to design each clue. I wrote clues, some of which I made up, others I found from a Google search, and still others I found from awesome pins I found on Pinterest.
I incorporated a movement activity for each clue (i.e. ‘you found me now do a little dance’). I also wrote an interesting fact for each animal on the bottom of each clue (i.e. ‘Lions can grow to 10 ft., longer than most cars’). I had 14 clue cards in total.
Of course, what’s a treasure hunt without a treasure? You can make it as inexpensive or expensive as you want. I found lots of fun items at the Dollar Store. The final clue giving the location of the treasure was read once a puzzle assembled from pieces of the African continent were assembled.
I glued the picture onto a square piece of cardboard, saved from a thin crust pizza box. I promise it was clean! 🙂 The size was perfect, nearly an exact 8 1/2 x 11. Then I cut along some of the lines of the picture, making sure to cut the clue into pieces in the process. I placed it all in a large Ziploc bag and stowed it in its hiding spot.
I used a vintage makeup case to store the treasure trove, and gently placed it in my dryer.
Above all, fun, sweet memories were made. I hope they will forever remember their first treasure hunt with the same fondness that I recall my own!
P.S. Don’t forget the Rainforest Treasure/Scavenger Hunt next!