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Curious
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Travel Treasure Hunt

A hidden objects game

Highlights 4Cs

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Creative
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Curious
The light bulb icon represents curiosity. For content about raising a curious child, look for this icon.
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Caring
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Confident
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Just because you know where something is hidden doesn’t mean you can find it easily (think about the last time you lost your keys). Help your kids develop their nose for uncovering hidden objects with this portable treasure-hunt game. The kids make the treasure container, write the list of hidden objects, and then time themselves (or a friend) to see how long it takes them to find everything. It’s a little bit of focus and a whole lot of fun.
Rice Treasure
What You’ll Need
  • 20 small, colorful objects, such as buttons, marbles, toy cars, and coins
  • Paper
  • Tape
  • Clear plastic container with a tight-fitting lid (we used a recycled peanut butter container)
  • Uncooked rice

Reminder: Small materials, such as buttons, can be a choking hazard for small children, so close adult supervision is a must.

How to Make the Treasure

1. Make a list on a piece of paper of the 20 small, colorful objects.

2. Pour some rice into the container, then add a few objects. Add more rice, then more objects. Alternate until the rice is an inch or two from the top. Put the lid on the container.

3. Make a label for the jar that says “Can You Find?” and lists the small objects inside. Tape the label to the jar. 

How to Play
  1. See how many items you can find in one minute. (Shake the jar to shift the rice.)
  2. Play again, but this time see how long it takes you to find all the objects.
  3. Play alone or with a friend, and time each other.
Extend the Fun

Younger children: Small objects aren’t recommended for children under 3. For a younger child, use larger versions of everything. Get a large plastic container (try a large yogurt container or a 32-ounce takeout container) and hide fewer but larger toys (such as bath toys, large plastic blocks, large plush pompoms, and so on). To make the labels, you can write (or help your child write) the objects’ names, and she can draw pictures of the objects next to their names.

Older children: Once your child can find all the objects easily, encourage him to do it with his eyes closed. He’ll have to focus on using his sense of touch. And if that’s still too easy, ask him to identify each object as he finds it. So not only will he have to find it, he’ll have to pay attention to its shape and size and remember what was on the list. (Not as easy as it sounds…)

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