Easter egg hunts and other holiday events for kids who like to be scavengers are few and far between, unless parents are avid geocaching adventurists themselves. For kids who love finding “treasures”, here are some apps that they might enjoy together with other family members.
Fido’s Treehouse Scavenger Hunt! – $1.99 for iPad
This app’s title screen shows that there are two modes of play – one being a Free Play mode for ages 1-5, and the other a Challenge Mode for ages 5-8. Although the Free Play is fun, I’d highly recommend Fido’s Treehouse being for older kids since there is a great deal of reading required. Parents and caregivers may even want to play together with kids, since clues and text aren’t all voiced.
Users follow 15 clues (which are randomized) in order to find the treasure. Clues come in the form of scrolls which hold cryptic messages like:
It is found in the backyard.
It has a musical scale.
It makes music when hit.
Make some music with it to collect your next clue!
Some of the clues are a bit tricky, so there’s an online walkthrough which parents can download/print for easy reference. It’s rather impressive as to how many items have been animated and placed through the different scenes, which include a park, backyard, treehouse with two floors.
And instead of running through three separate physical locations and hiding multiple real items, this is kind of nice way to give kids an adventure, make them feel as if they got an interactive experience, then clean it all up by pressing a button.
Hidden Object games – multiple
The market is flooded with hidden object games, such that Shockwave.com has its own section. If you use these keywords in the App Stores, you’re also bound to come up with tons of options. They’re not really my thing, so that’s all I’m going to say about that. I do still really love Where’s Waldo for the iPad though.
Toddler’s Seek & Find Picture Book – My Little Town – free to try, $2.99 in-app purchase
Even though there are no explicit instructions within the app to find objects, I’m adding this in here, because I think it’s a great way to build vocabulary if an adult (or older child) can identify objects to find. For older kids, it might be a great starting point for a game of “I Spy”.
After playing with this app, little kids might think all picture books should operate in a similar fashion with cute illustrations and darling animations. Comprised of three hand-drawn scenes, nearly everything moves when pressed, and it’s lovely because there are so many tiny details within each scene. In the first cityscape, users can interact with the objects of a house, cut open like a dollhouse so that you can see the inside. On the street outside, there are lots of things to press on, like the helicopter, sun, birds, people on the bus, and even the window shutters. In the park, there is an equal abundance of items to press on, including flowers that will grow and blow away. And in the last cityscape scene, there are lots of actions going on that could keep a toddler entertained for hours. I’d definitely recommend this app for an iPad (with a protective cover) because it’s much nicer when the graphics are bigger and easier to see.
Wonderkind also has a similar app called Toddler’s Seek & Find: At the Circus. An interactive activity storybook. The trial is also free with in-app purchases of two scenes for $1.99.
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