Math Scavenger Hunt for First Grade Mini-Detectives

If your kids love to find hidden things, try a math scavenger hunt! It's a great end-of-year activity, since it lets kids practice all the major first grade math concepts they've learned. Scavenger hunts get kids moving and searching, thinking and laughing--a great combination for learning!

Preparing for the Activity

Your first grade scavenger hunt will take place primarily in one room (it could be in a house or a classroom), with a brief excursion outdoors to mix things up a bit. You will not need anything special, though if the room typically does not have money in it, either plant some there or make sure you have a wallet available with some coins for kids to count.

Because a scavenger hunt is likely a new experience for first graders, most will need a lot of adult help with this--both reading the text and understanding what to do. If you do the activity with many children at once, lead kids through each step together as a group. Even better would be to break the class into small groups, with a leader in each group, if you have some adult volunteers or parents to help.

You can download a printable version of the scavenger hunt by clicking here. Have kids write down each answer as they find it. Here goes...

The First Grade Math Scavenger Hunt

1. How many round things can you find in this room? Count them.
2. Find an odd number in a book or newspaper.
3. Count how many living things are in this room. Is the number odd or even?
4. Go outside and find 8 leaves. Then find 4 flowers. Add them together. How many?
5. Collect 10 rocks. Keep the 3 best rocks. How many rocks did you put back?
6. Go stand by a tree. Then walk back to the door. Count your steps. How many steps from the tree to the door?
7. How many shoes in the room? Count them by 2's.
8. Count the red things in the room. Is the number greater or less than 10?
9. How much money can you find? Add it up and see how much there is.
10. Write down a number between 10 and 15. Ask someone who is wearing white to clap that many times.
11. How many fingers and toes in the room? Count by 5's.
12. How many people's legs are in the room? How many animal legs? How many chair legs? How many table legs? Add all the legs together.

Talk about what you all discovered in your math scavenger hunt. Was anything hard to discover? Were there any surprises? What did you learn?