Gaming in the Outdoors

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In this set of outdoor games, learners increase their awareness of the outdoor environment by going on a scavenger hunt and an out-of-place hunt. In the first game, learners hunt for things like animal homes, food for different animals, and natural objects with shapes like square, circle, and triangle. In the second game, learners search on a trail that has been set up with natural objects in areas where they do not belong. Both games can be made simpler or more difficult depending on the learners' ages. Instructions are also provided for making ink prints and crayon rubbings of objects.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
1 to 2 hours

Learning Time:
1 to 2 hours

Estimated Materials Cost:
$5 - $10 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 4 - 11

Resource Types:
Activity, Game


Materials List (per group of students)

  • 5 to 8 hunt cards (3" x 5" index cards)
  • 1 30-cm pieces of thick string or yarn
  • 1 plastic bag
  • 1 pencil or crayon
  • 1 roll of transparent tape
  • 1 hand lens
  • 1 score card (5" x 8" index card) with trail outline
  • 1 pencil
  • 1 ball of string
  • 1 pair of scissors
  • 1 box of natural objects (fruit, leaves, shells, rocks, sand)
  • 10 to 12 trial markers (stakes or flagging, and index cards)
  • marking pens


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Structure
      • Rocks and Minerals
  • Life Sciences
    • Diversity of Life
      • Plants
      • Animals
      • Classification
    • Ecology
      • Ecosystems
  • Mathematics
    • Geometry
      • Plane Geometry
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Asking Questions
      • Formulating Explanations
      • Communicating Results

Informal Categories

  • Animals
  • Games
  • Outdoor Activity
  • Physical Activity


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • be mobile
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves teamwork and communication skills
  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access



  • All rights reserved, The Regents of the University of California, 1980