The Feeling’s Mutual: Treasure Hunt

Arrr be me mateys.

Arrr be me mateys.

This is what the scribblings of an insane person planning a mutual activity look like.

This is what the scribblings of an insane person planning a mutual activity look like.

One day a few weeks ago, I was laying on the couch with my daughter watching Backyardigans or something similar.  Whatever it was, they were pretending to be pirates and going on a treasure hunt.  Suddenly, I sat up off the couch in one of those “Aha!” moments, and my brain wouldn’t stop thinking until I got a piece of paper and wrote down all my ideas.

After much thought and bugging my husband with my ideas, I finally put together a treasure hunt at our church building for the youth.  I decided I would share it on my blog in case anyone else wanted to try something similar, but I should warn you now that it takes time and energy to plan, so if you’re looking for something quick and easy to do, this ain’t it.  🙂

THEME: “But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal.” 3 Nephi 13:20 or Matthew 6:20

I wanted this activity to be fun, but I wanted it to have a spiritual message, too.  As my brother mentioned in one of his previous posts, our youth need more than just fun activities.  They need opportunities to learn more about the gospel and gain their own testimonies.

I started out with listing as many hiding places in the church building as I could.  Then, I tried to find scriptures that would lead them to those rooms.  Obviously, our buildings aren’t going to be exactly the same, but I bet they’re pretty darn close, so here’s the list of scriptures that I came up with for our building in case you want to use them.

Relief Society Room – 1 Cor 13:8Titus 2:3D&C 25:3

Young Women’s Room – Mosiah 18:9Titus 2:4

Gym – D&C 89:20

Primary Room – Isaiah 54:13

Couch – Psalms 6:6

Family History Center – Moses 6:81 Nephi 3:12

Branch President’s Office – D&C 64:40

Kitchen – 1 Samuel 8:13; Leviticus 24:5; Genesis 19;3

Organ – Job 21:12

Sacrament TableD&C 59:9

LibraryD&C 109:7

Nursery Matthew 21:16

First Vision Painting –  Joseph Smith History: 1:17

Fruit TreeAlma 32:40

*Note* – Each clue needs to have the team number AND the number of each clue on it.  This is crucial for the hunt to work correctly.

Now, these scripture clues led them to the room, but in order to find the clues in a specific place within that room, I made pirate clues (If you need help sounding like a pirate, there are lots of pirate speak websites.).  I thought it would be more fun if I put them on a treasure map.  When put together, the map didn’t really lead them to the treasure.  It was just some random map I found on the internet.  It was just for funsies.  After I added the clues to it using Picasa, it ended up looking like this.

Treasure-Map with clues

I divided the map up into pieces with a sharpie marker, made copies, and cut them up.  You can find the font I used (and other cool Pirate fonts) here.

If you’re not sure how to download fonts onto your computer, here’s how:

  1. Download whatever font you want from the internet by clicking “download.”
  2. Open the file.  It’s always a .zip file.  You’ll need to extract it before you can use it.
  3. Extract it by pressing the button at the top of the file window that says, “Extract All Files.”  Make sure you save it in a file that you can easily locate.
  4. Locate the file that ends in .TTF.  Double-click it to open the preview window.
  5. Click the “Install” button on the top left to install it.

 I divided the youth into 4 teams with one adult leader.  The adult leader was to keep them on track and help them out if they got stuck. In order to keep them from just following another team around, I changed each team’s path.  Basically, they were all going in the same order room to room, but they all started in different places.  The last clue led them all to the “Tree of Life” at the end.  If what I said didn’t make any sense to you, here’s each team’s order written out.  Also, all the pirate clues that I came up with are there in PDF form.

Room and Clue Keys for Leaders

Arrrr be th' pirate gear.

Arrrr be th’ pirate gear.

About a week ahead of time, I had my Beehives over to my house, and we made Pirate Hats and Eye Patches.  They turned out pretty cute, and the youth ACTUALLY WORE THEM! *gasp*  It took us about an hour and a half to make them all.

Once all the teams got to the end of the hunt, we gathered together and discussed the contents of the treasure chest.  I tried to fill it with things that represented treasures they could take to heaven.  I also bought a bunch of candy in gold and silver wrappers, so it would look like a real treasure chest when they opened it up.  I used a boot box, and it worked perfectly.  If had been more creative, I could’ve decorated the box, but I didn’t.  They didn’t seem to care.  🙂

What be in me treasure chest

What be in me treasure chest

Here are the “treasures of heaven” that I included in the box:

I also printed off scriptures or quotes to go with each object.  I then printed off the theme and attached it to the inside of the lid.

Th' treasures inside be worth mor' than gold.

Th’ treasures inside be worth mor’ than gold.

The quotes I made can be found in the PDF files below.

Treasure Chest Scriptures Treasures in Heaven Quote Poster

Overall, I think the youth had a good time.  I do have some tips for ya after doing this…

  • Put all your clues together in the right order before you get to the church to set up.  It doesn’t matter if you think it will be easy once you get there.  You’ll feel rushed and crazy, and you’ll need my husband to be there to calm you down and sort it out for you. 🙂
  • Make sure you have the whole building available to do your activity, especially if you share the building with other wards/branches.  If someone calls at the last minute (ie: the day of) asking if they can use part of the building for an activity, say NO! (but in a nice way.)  You may think it won’t be a problem, but it will be.
  • Don’t assume that the youth understand the rules of a scavenger hunt.  EXPLAIN THE RULES COMPLETELY!  Otherwise, you’ll have teams grabbing clues for another team, and then everyone will get screwed up.  Also, make sure they know that they have to go in the numerical order on the clues.
  • Make sure that if you ask someone to hide a clue for you that they put it in the right place.  That can cause problems.
  • Go to the church super early to set-up, or you’ll be running around like a chicken with your head cut-off.
  • Bring someone to help you.  My husband was AMAZING!  I could not have done it without him.
1 Yellow Cake Mix1 can crushed pineapple, drained1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk8 oz whipped topping2/3 cup coconutPrepare cake mix as directed on the back of package. Mix 1/2 can of pineapple into batter.  Bake according to directions on package. With a fork, poke holes in warm cake at 1-inch intervals. Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over cake. Allow cake to cool.  Spread whipped topping over the cake.  Sprinkle the top with coconut and remaining pineapple.

1 Yellow Cake Mix
1 can crushed pineapple, drained
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
8 oz whipped topping
2/3 cup coconut
Prepare cake mix as directed on the back of package. Mix 1/2 can of pineapple into batter. Bake according to directions on package. With a fork, poke holes in warm cake at 1-inch intervals. Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over cake. Allow cake to cool. Spread whipped topping over the cake. Sprinkle the top with coconut and remaining pineapple.

Oh, and for refreshments, I made a Piña Colada cake recipe that came from 101 Things To Do With A Cake Mix that was apparently really tasty. One of my young women was scraping the bottom trying to get more. You should most definitely buy that book.  Everything I’ve made from there has been delicious.

Overall, I think the youth had a good time.  I’m hoping that they learned a little something at the end, too.

The scriptures will lead you to the Tree of Life, and you will find hidden treasures that are worth far more than gold. 

I hope this was helpful!  If you have any questions, or if just want to tell me how your activity went, feel free to leave a comment!

This entry was posted in Christ, eternal families, Family, Just for fun!, mutual, treasure hunt, Uncategorized, Youth Activity and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

21 Responses to The Feeling’s Mutual: Treasure Hunt

  1. fishing led says:

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    present one thing back and aid others like you aided me.

  2. Kay Biggerstaff says:

    Love this idea, we will be trying this in July. Thanks for sharing

  3. Linecia says:

    Great idea!! Planning this for upcoming saturday. Cleary Estate Brach, South Africa. Thanks!

    • hanneyjo says:

      Never thought my idea would end up in South Africa! Awesome! Glad to be of help. Hope it goes well for you!

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  6. Nicola says:

    Gave me the idea to do something like this for our hike this Thursday, thank you!! I wanted to do something spiritual but fun so thought of scriptures and to find objects in the scriptures. I have popped it below in case you want to use it sometime. We have heads and animals and ships etc on our money so a few of them are money orientated!! We are going to a waterfall, so will do the hunt around there.
    Thanks again, Nicola in New Zealand

    Scavenger Hunt Worksheet

    Each team looks up the first scripture and reads it carefully to discover what they need to find that will fit into their bag. After they find the first object, they read the second scripture and find that object, and so on. Each scripture will tell them what they need to find, except number 25 , which has special instructions. The first team to collect all 24 items and complete clue number 25 wins.

    1. Matthew 7:25

    2. Psalm 102:11

    3. Jeremiah 8:8

    4. Doctrine and Covenants 45:37

    5. Mark 10:38

    6. Ezekiel 37:16–17

    7. Matthew 10:30

    8. Exodus 3:5

    9. D&C 88:118

    10. James 1:23

    11 . Song of Solomon 2:12

    12. 2 kings 12 :16

    13 Isaiah 57:20

    14 Moses 2:7

    15 Job 30:7

    16 1 kings 6:34

    17 Mathew 4:4

    18 Esther 8:8

    19 Alma 63:7

    20 Proverbs 26:2

    21 Alma 19:7

    22 1 Kings 5:17

    23 exodus 40:14

    24 Daniel 3:21

    25 what does this scripture mean?
    Turn to Mosiah in the Book of Mormon

    Find the chapter by the age of the youngest Deacon, subtract the age of a sunbeam, then subtract 7

    Find the verses by counting all your fingers and thumbs and add the days of the week.
    The second verse is the new boys mission age.

    To finish the game do something this scripture is talking about.
    (Spend 2 mins showing us what this scripture means to you.)

    Scripture Scavenger Hunt Key
    (1) rock, (2) grass, (3) pen, (4) leaves, (5) cup, (6) stick, (7) hairs, (8) shoes, (9) book, (10) glass 11 flower 12 money any 13 dirt 14 water 15 bush 16 fir leaves if poss, 17 bread 18 ring 19 ship ( 50c) 20 bird on money 21 queen money 22 stones 23 coat 24 hat 25 mosiah 2:17-18 service,love.

  7. Fuilata says:

    Thank you so much for sharing! Truly inspired activity I cannot wait to share at our Stake Young Women Leadership Training!

  8. ssagers says:

    Awesome ideas! We’ll use them in Salem, Utah this week. Thank you!

  9. Alice Keogh says:

    Thanks for this great idea we will be using this with out YW this week in Dublin, Ireland

  10. When we were planning our combined activities, my YW wanted to do a treasure hunt. I googled scripture treasure hunt and found this and am so grateful I did! Thank you so much for sharing all your great ideas. We just had our activity tonight and it was awesome. We did it a little more low-key, no pirate theme, sadly. (No pirate hats cheap enough to be found) but everyone had fun. And I was so glad to have the forms you’d made available. Thank you from our district in New Jersey!

  11. Stephanie says:

    So great! We’ll be using this next week in Boise, ID!

  12. Liz Valverde says:

    Muchas gracias por esta maravillosa idea, la usaré en una mutual combinada con los jóvenes de mi barrio a inicios de este 2016.
    Como líder de las Mujeres Jóvenes, siempre estoy buscando ideas creativas en las que ellas puedan aprender cosas significativas para sus vidas y esta sé que les servirá a reconocer cuales son las prioridades que le mantendrán con éxito en esta tierra.
    Gracias por su tiempo, esfuerzo y dedicación en su llamamiento, usted pone en acción el amor puro de Cristo al compartir sus experiencias con todos nosotros. Siga esforzándose por mejorar aún cuando quizás no siga con este llamamiento.
    I’m really sorry for not being able to write to you in English, I have knowledge of their language are few.
    Liz Valverde D.

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