Scavenger hunts are a great way to get your students working together for a common goal. This is a wonderful way for them to bond as a class or to gel as a group project team. These types of hunts can be used for assessment as well but I want to focus mainly on team and community building.
For interaction, successful group work, and/or great discussion to occur in your class there needs to be trust. Students need to trust the instructor but more importantly, they need to trust their classmates. This trust is what allows the students to speak their minds, voice their opinions, or contradict an instructor or a classmate. Without this all you get is superficiality.
While building trust within a classroom is another topic in and of itself, the first step to establishing this type of environment is to get the students familiar with one another and to have them experience working as a team. A scavenger hunt is a fun way to do this.
Check out Goose Chase scavenger hunt creator. First, a special shout out to Melissa Negreiros from Philip Simmons Elementary who introduced me to this application. It’s a free (mostly) digital scavenger hunt application and here are the details:
- Regular account allows for 3 groups in a hunt and one hunt at a time.
- Educator account allows for 5 groups in a hunt and one hunt at a time.
- Educator paid is <$50/yr.
- Built-in list of possible activities from which to choose
- Can create your own activities customized to your students, organization, or content
- Can set a duration for the hunt
- Can easily invite students with a class code, no accounts required
- Can password protect it
- Group community building
- Class community building
- Content assessment
- Field trip engagement
- Brain break
- Learn about campus resources