Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Zoo Scavenger Hunt

So we love to go the the Minnesota Zoo - we're members and go often.  It is especially great in the winter to visit the indoor trails because it gets us out of the house and out walking around.  The kids never seem to tire of seeing the same animals, but it can get a bit repetitive.

We went there Friday while Dean was at zoo camp (so fun for the kids, BTW - unless they get bit by a dog!) and had plans to go again on Labor Day.  We had free entry coupons expiring that day AND it was the last day of the monorail ever so our friends really wanted to go before it was too late.  It does take some creativity to keep all the kids entertained for a full day, as our friends were wanting to visit the whole zoo, and we usually last a couple hours and then head home.

I REALLY liked this printable Scavenger Hunt I found on Teaching's a Hoot's blog.  It has questions like "What animal has feathers?" and "Find an animal with claws."  Visit her blog for the 2 page printable.
We printed a copy for each kid and brought our clipboards and a pencil for each.  Some animals would fit in more than one category, such as a penguin has both feathers and wings and also swims.  At the end of the day they counted to see which animal could fit in the most boxes.

The girls are really into the "alphabet game" where they find each letter of the alphabet, in order, on signs and race to complete the alphabet first.  Dean is learning the alphabet as well so we decided to add a twist to the game.

On the backside of the scavenger hunt pages we wrote all the letters with spaces next to them.  They had to find:
-Actual letters on signs IN ALPHABETICAL ORDER
-Animals or items that begin with each letter (2 points for an actual animal, 1 point if it is a non-animal item i.e. turtle is 2 points and trash can is only 1) IN ORDER
-Letter shapes around us.  So tree branches were shaped like a "W," an "X" on the picnic table, and a "S" shape in the swan neck and body.  These don't have to be in any order and can be upper or lowercase.  You can find as many of one letter as you want.  Whoever finds the most wins.

This was a total winner with the girls and really helped them focus (remember - ADHD) and get more out of the visit.  The same zoo over and again can get boring and lose it's appeal.  
Here's Taylor diligently writing on her clipboard!