If your child loves Lewis Carroll's classic children's book "Alice in Wonderland" or the Disney movie version, consider organizing a Wonderland-themed scavenger hunt for her and her friends. This could be part of a birthday or holiday celebration if you like, or it could be a slightly elaborate group play date or general party. It also pairs up well with a tea party event, Mad Hatter style.
You can let every child search solo, but it also might be fun to organize participants into two teams. Give the teams whimsical names such as "Alice in Wonderland" versus "Through the Looking Glass" or "Eat Me" versus "Drink Me" or "Tweedledum" versus "Tweedledee." Smaller children or non-competitive types might prefer to try the scavenger hunt all as a single group, with everyone helping and no "opponent," only a shared goal.
What to Look For
Tiny items invoke Alice's size-changing adventures, so consider using small keys, a doll's tea set, a tiny pocket watch and other miniature objects for the scavenger hunt. Other items of use in an Alice-themed scavenger hunt include mushrooms, cookies and small bottles labeled "eat me" and "drink me," a fan and gloves, croquet balls and playing cards from the heart suit. Don't forget the lawn flamingos. Figurines of major characters such as the Dodo, the Cheshire Cat and the Mad Hatter can also be used, as can note cards or prints of artwork from the books.
Where to Look
You can start your scavenger hunt either indoors or outdoors, depending on the weather, available space and similar considerations. If you do it in a public place such as a park, however, you run the risk of non-participants discovering your hidden treasures first.
Give young children a list of items to look for -- no need to get complicated. Older children, however, may enjoy getting their clues in the form of riddles, since riddles are central to the "Alice in Wonderland" experience. Some of the riddles can be as nonsensical as Alice's "how is a raven like a writing desk?" but the rest should aim for whimsical but solvable.
If you want to give a prize at the end of the scavenger hunt, consider something in the shape of the white rabbit, after which poor Alice spent most of the book chasing. Another possibility is a heart-shaped tart in honor of the Queen of Hearts and her court that you will share among all the participants, of course.
- The Annotated Alice: Lewis Carroll, Martin Gardner et. al.
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