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How to have a digital scavenger hunt

Posted Aug 13 2011 12:52pm

A digital scavenger hunt is where you have a list of ten or more assignments for groups of 4-6 kids. Each assignment involves your group doing something simple around town like having your group picture taken under a stop sign (notice I did not say a stop light…..we do not want to hurt our kids during this activity!) or a picture taken going down a slide or at the grocery store buying candy. Get creative in making up your list and think through things like safety, cost and what your time frame is. Ten assignments seem to work well and takes about an hour. You really can have as many groups as you want as long as you have an adult for each group. It’s actually really fun when several different groups happen to go to the same grocery store at different times. The employees get a kick out of it and find it fun.

What sets the group apart is what they wear and this can be done really cheap. The first year I did this I looked around my house and got stupid things like a shower cap, sponge curlers, big glasses, a wig, etc and put three items in each girl’s bag, which was a brown lunch sack. I also had a dress up trunk at the time and had tacky clothes that the girls put on. They thought they were just putting on a “tacky fashion show”  but it really had all just gotten started! That’s when I explained they were about to go on a scavenger hunt around town, in their dress up clothes. Mortified doesn’t even describe it. But they loved it! Somehow I lost all my dress up clothes since then so I just use tacky hats, glasses and something around the neck. This year I put in a leis from Party City (3/$1) and cat in the hat type hats from Walmart (.75) and then I splurged and bought tacky glasses from Party City. I have used Groucho Marx glasses before or animal snout plastic thingies that are really cheap too.  Anything will do really. I have graduated from brown lunch sacks to cute colored bags that coincide with the party colors and these are still cheap at .20 a bag. Make it cute my putting their names on it and doodling on it.

Pull your group together and tell them they need to have a props person and a treasurer. The treasurer holds the money for things you have put on their assignment like buying a banana or french fries, etc. The props person holds whatever prop you may send with them. Toilet paper was our only prop this time around. They had to wrap a girl in front of a sign. After your group knows who is going to do what then read to them the entire list of assignments out loud. They may have some questions about it and you can answer those questions but don’t give it too much time to overanalyze and stress over it. Encourage your group to be courteous and not to be rude while trying to hurry through their list. We’ve always had two groups and the driver usually is the photo person. If you have a larger group then let there be a designated photographer and they don’t have to be in the picture but can still wear the getup.

Print off your list of assignments and give each person a copy on their way out the door. The adult drivers should not help the kids at all even though it’s tempting especially when you know one stop is right around the corner but they want to go the opposite side of town! Part of the fun is letting them do it completely on their own, longer routes and all.

If you have a larger group and your church is your start off and ending point then have a designated place that the team has to be in to assure no confusion. You could use empty parking spaces as each team’s landing spot…mark it with shaving cream or whatever or the youth room couch or whatever. We had a small group of two so we just said first team back with all the pictures taken and on the couch wins. All pictures should include the entire team and they have to be wearing their accessories or that picture doesn’t count.

I am including the list of assignments our teams had to do this last go around. 

1) Group picture of each girl in your group talking on a banana. Purchase bananas.

2) A picture of your group on one piece of playground equipment at our church

3) A picture of your group trying on a hat or scarf at a local store

4) Individual pictures of each girl doing a cheerleading move on top of a toilet seat

5) A picture of your group spelling out a letter with your bodies

6) A picture of one of your group members wrapped in toilet paper in front of the soldier downtown (toilet paper provided…don’t leave any there)

7) A picture of a dog (yes, that is random)

8) A picture of your group with a store manager (assistant store manager will do)

9) A picture of your group with a fast food worker in uniform

10) A picture of your group on Ms. Melody’s front porch

Okay, so I know this was random but I thought I’d just list out some basics in case you wanted to try it out. Could be used as a birthday party or any kind of youth event or outreach or whatever. Fun stuff. Good luck and feel free to ask any questions if you have any. If you’re hitting this post by itself check out this post for pictures of what a digital scavenger hunt ends up looking like. 

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