- construction paper
- old magazines, tissue paper, or paint swatches
- several disposable cameras
- hole punch, binder rings
Objective: Children will develop observational, math, and language skills as they engage in daily activities to distinguish colors, shapes, and opposites.
Explain to children that they will engage in a weeklong outdoor treasure hunt. Each day they will search for different things like colors, shapes, and opposites and use cameras to record what they find. The entire group can do each of the following projects or small groups can do each of the following projects or small groups of children can be assigned to find a specific treasure. The activity will culminate with a book-making activity that depicts all the treasures.
Collect a variety of colored paper (tissue, paint swatches, and such) and ask children to choose a color. Invite them to go on an outdoor treasure hunt to find and photograph things that are the same color. Children can glue their photographs and paper swatches onto a sheet of oaktag. Include children's dictations to describe their colored treasures.
Cut out a paper triangle, circle, square, and rectangle. Divide children into four groups and give each group a shape. Children can work in teams to find and photograph things outdoors that match their shape. Glue their shapes and photographs onto sheets of oaktag and include children's dictations or writings about the shapes they found.
Opposites to Treasure
Write the following opposites on a sheet of chart paper: big/small, loud/quiet, soft/hard, and open/closed. Invite children to think of other opposite pairs that could describe things found outdoors. Divide the children into four groups. Ask each group to choose an opposite pair to focus on four their treasure hunt. Each team will then glue their photographs onto a sheet of oaktag and label the opposite pairs.
Treasure Hunt Book
Conclude the treasure hunt with a book-making activity. Ask children to assist in organizing the sections of the book, including creating a cover and title page. Invite family members and celebrate with a book party.
Literacy: Outdoor Bingo. Invite children to make outdoor bingo cards. Provide them with a variety of old magazines, catalogs, scissors, glue and paper. Children can cut out pictures of things that are found outdoors and glue them onto sheets of paper. (Cut out pictures ahead of time for younger children.) Provide a crayon and a bingo card during outdoor playtime or neighborhood walks and children can find items on their card.
Learning Through Play: Problem Solving by Ellen Booth Church
Tools by Susan Canizares and Samantha Berger
Tulip Builds a Birdhouse by Dale Gottlieb