Spring Scavenger Hunt: A Simple Nature Printable for Young Children

I’m not a fan of themed learning, instead preferring to ‘follow the child’ and adapt a flexible approach to learning. All too often themes can be overdone with the child long since losing interest in topics like ‘People who Help Us’ or ‘Under the Sea.’ With that being said, the one thing we love to welcome with open arms are seasonal changes!

There’s something very organic about observing the coming and goings of the new seasons. The children are naturally curious, asking questions about what is happening to the world around them and therefore it makes sense to celebrate and acknowledge what is happening.

Spending plenty of time out in nature is a vital part of our daily rhythm. Not only is time in nature good for everyone’s wellbeing, but I’ve observed that my youngest son really thrives when he’s had hours of time outdoors each day.

Undoubtedly getting outside for longer durations feels more possible in the springtime. The weather is warmer (without being too hot!) and you usually don’t have to dress in quite so many layers. If you currently don’t spend much time outdoors, now is a great time to build up to longer durations of nature play.

With all of that in mind, I have created this free Spring Scavenger Hunt printable pdf which you can download without having to sign up to the mailing list.

toddler in pink hoodie looking at red tulips

Spring Scavenger Hunt

This simple Spring scavenger hunt is aimed at toddlers and pre-schoolers. Whilst I have tried to make the list as general as possible, the nature treasures you see during Spring will depend on where you live in the world. If the list isn’t quite relevant to you, I recommend taking inspiration from the Spring scavenger hunt printable and using a free app like Canva to create your own version.


vibrant pink cherry blossom tree

How to use Responsibly

Whilst a scavenger hunt often implies taking and collecting items, in this case I recommend simply taking a photograph. Please don’t disturb the animals or pick flowers – leave those for the bees and bugs. This can be tricky with very young toddlers who are hands on with their approach to learning, but I find that the more children are exposed to nature, the easier it becomes for them to simply observe their surroundings.

Phrases to use instead of ‘Don’t touch’

Are instinct is often to exclaim ‘Don’t touch!’ when your child is grabbing at flowers or poking at a bug. However, often our child then fixates on the last word (touch) – so our well meaning phrases can often have the opposite impact.

Instead try:

‘Smell with your nose’

‘Look with your eyes’

‘Listen with your ears’

‘Imagine with your mind’

or you can even make it more playful:

  • ‘let’s take an invisible photograph!’ (press down your finger on the pretend camera and say click! click!)
  • Can you pretend to be a bee and gather the nectar?
  • I wonder how many red flowers there are…
  • I wonder what the lamb’s name is…

Related articles that you might enjoy:

Spring Bucket List for Kids

Why Be Careful Doesn’t Work and 15 phrases to try instead

5 Reasons Why your Child Needs Plenty of Outdoor Play 

You can also follow my Instagram and Pinterest pages for daily play inspiration


Related Products

Plan your Daily Rhythm Pack 

Play Space 101

Playful Days at Home Starter Kit 


Get Your Spring Scavenger Hunt +Spring Bucket List Printables

Don’t forget that you can access a printable version of this Spring  Scavenger hunt here and the spring bucket list here

Save it to your phone or share it with your friends 🙂

spring scavenger hunt printable

Sian Thomas
an image of This Playful Home founder, Sian Thomas. The photo includes a photo of her daughter when she was around 18 months old

I’m Siân (rhymes with yarn), a play advocate, proud parent to three, and former teacher. My mission is to infuse more joy and less overwhelm into the lives of parents. Discover play-based activities with me that not only make learning FUN but also forge deep connections with your young learners, creating memories to cherish forever.