Monday, October 27, 2014

Clued In Kids {Schoolhouse Review Crew}

My kids love treasure hunts and scavenger hunts and mini adventures of all kinds.  I love doing them with my kids.  I'm just not so great at planning and organizing them.  I'm lousy at it, actually.  It's been about 3 years since I've created my own, so when I was given the chance to review Clued in Kids I jumped at the chance.  Clued in Kids was created by Helen Bertelli as a realization of a childhood dream.  They offer a variety of treasure and scavenger hunts that are not only fun, but help develop academic and logic skills, as well as social skills and teamwork when working in groups.  This sounded like the perfect fun addition to our homeschool!

Clued In Kids review

I was given the opportunity to review two different treasure hunts.  I received the Pirate Treasure Hunt Clue Pad and the Multiplication Dragons Treasure Hunt, which gave me plenty of fun and educational material for both boys!  You can't believe how excited I was to try these out and have the work done for me!  The clues are actually riddles, puzzles and other educational activities that get the kids thinking!  All I had to do was read the instructions, hide the clues according to the instructions, and watch the kids have fun!  It was really that easy!

Okay, so I did "assign" clues too, but even that is described in the instructions, giving easier clues to younger children, more difficult clues to older children, and activity clues to everyone. So I did just that.  There is a place to write in a name, so I pre-assigned clues by writing the boys' names in, giving simple clues to Emory (who is 5 years old) and the ones that involved more reading and writing to Elliott (who is almsot 8 years old), and I wrote both their names on the activity clues!  I also made sure that each boy had the same number of individual clues.  I have to be fair like that.

Pirate Treasure Hunt

Clued In Kids review

The Pirate Treasure Hunt Clue Pad ($8.99) is a physical clue pad that arrived in the mail.  Obviously, I chose a pirate theme because I have two boys that love all things pirates.  This hunt was designed for children 4+ so I knew it would work well for both of them.  The clues ranged from riddles, to find the hidden object, to dot-to-dot, to reading clues in the mirror, and much more.  Emory is working on a maze here, and then Elliott helped him "spell" out the gold coins that would lead them to their next clue.

Clued In Kids review

Other clues were hopping on a peg leg and reading a clue in a mirror.  Just a lot of silly fun, but with an educational twist!

The "treasure" for this hunt was a pirate themed game called Matchin' Contractions (a dollar store find) to keep the fun going!  I knew the game was too hard for my Kindergartner, so I threw in some character candy, including a lollipop for the toddler tag-along, and all were happy!

Clued In Kids review

Multiplication Dragons

Clued In Kids review

Multiplication Dragons is actually a series of five printable treasure hunts that cover the 2x-6x times tables!  (It is regularly priced at $30.00 but is currently on sale for $19.99 at the time of this post.)  It was designed for children ages 7-9, but I believe older and younger students can benefit from it as well.  Elliott is 2nd grade and can do some multiplication, so I thought this would be a fun math supplement, but some of the clues were easy enough that Emory could participate too!  This is one of the easier clues, and there were also "find the hidden picture" clues and riddles and other simpler clues that younger students can do.  All of the clues were fun enough that it didn't even seem like school work or learning was even happening!

Clued In Kids review

Notice how the clue tells the hunt leader what to do?  This makes it really easy for unorganized parents to do.  *ahem*  I told you, these things are fabulous.

The only difference with the printable clues is that you have to print them and cut them apart, as there are two to a page.  Other than that, they are laid out the same as the physical clue pad.

Final Thoughts
As soon as we finished, they boys were asking for another one.  My 5 year old was even inspired to create his own hunts and draw his own treasure maps.  Now that should tell you how much they loved these!

I personally love how the clues are created for me, and there are instructions for hiding each clue.  The hiding places for each clue are also adaptable.  If you don't have a place to hide the next clue, you can keep it on you or adapt.  For instance, one of the clues was to be hidden in the mailbox--except our mail hadn't run and I didn't want to cause any confusion for the mailman if he did run before the boys made it that far, so I hid the clue in our newspaper box, and the boys thought it was funny that I "tricked" them.

The treasure at the end can be as simple or elaborate as you choose.  Some ideas I had while initially brainstorming:  puzzles, a new book from a favorite series,  a DVD for family movie night, recipe/ingredients for a favorite dessert, tickets to an upcoming activity . . . really, it could be anything!

This is a fun way to engage the kids, stretch their little minds, and still keep things fun around the house!  These hunts are for ALL kids, and there are a variety of hunts to meet the interests of everyone.  There are seasonal hunts, nutritional themed hunts, sports themed hunts and many other themes!  I am definitely interested in the seasonal and holiday hunts, because it adds a little fun to the season without any prep work from me!  These have so many uses--boredom busters, a team building exercise for small groups, family get-togethers, play dates, birthday parties and so much more!

At this time, you can sign up for the Clued In Kids Newsletter and receive one hunt for free.  Check out the Homework Rewards Treasure Hunt to see what it's like, but I guarantee even that one is fun!  You can also find out more about Clued in Kids online, or TwitterFacebook and Pinterest.

The Schoolhouse Review Crew reviewed several of the different hunts, so be sure to check out more reviews!

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1 comment:

  1. I love spending time with my son in the street. I found a good article Now, I spend time with my son in search of treasure. I advise everyone, walking in the air is very good for the younger man.