Scavenger hunts are an adaptable and fun pastime that you can do any time of the year. Birthdays are a good time to organize a hunt and themed parties are always popular, so this year, why not throw a Harry Potter scavenger hunt party?
Make Sure Your Mischief Makers Are Up to No Good
Print out all of your instructions on plain paper and include a cover page with a picture of Hogwarts or a hand-drawn castle labeling the instructions as the Marauder’s Map. The map can be made to look like it was charted on parchment paper by ripping off the corners and crinkling and flattening the papers to make them look old and worn. After, you can age your maps by placing them on a plate or cookie sheet and pouring tea or coffee over the papers. Wait several minutes then drain the coffee or tea and blow dry your parchment while still on the sheet. Once the maps are dry, roll them up and tie them with a string or ribbon like a scroll.
Have the Sorting Paper Assign Everyone Their House
You may not exactly have access to a magical talking hat, but you can create a paper fortune teller with the four different houses; Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Slytherin. Label the inside folds with Godric, Rowena, Helga and Salazar, the founders of each respective house and either draw or write lion, eagle, badger and snake on the outside flaps, which are the animals of each respective house. Don’t forget to color in your sorting fortune teller, as kids are always more entertained by things with a little color. The houses each have a designated color, where Gryffindor is red, Ravenclaw is blue, Hufflepuff is yellow, and Slytherin is green. Once everyone is housed, you may need to reassign the teams a bit to even them out.
Your Wizards Need Proper Attire
One of the most iconic Harry Potter pieces of clothing are the house ties. The ties are striped in the house colors; red/gold, yellow/black, blue/bronze and green/silver. To make a tie either cut out a simple tie shape from paper or cardboard or fold an origami tie and color them in the house colors. Using a hole punch, punch holes at the neck and use string to let your guests wear them during the hunt.
It’s Hard to Cast Spells Without a Wand
Roll out a piece of double-sided tape along the diagonal of a piece of paper and roll one side until it reaches the tape. Using glue, roll the other side so that you have your main wand shape. For a more sturdy wand, use a chopstick or an additional piece of paper to stiffen the wand. Once the wand is dry, trim both ends and plug them with hot glue. You can use glue to add detailing to the wand, then spray paint the wand a wooden color and tell your little wizards what their wand core is; the feather of a phoenix, unicorn tail hair or a dragon heartstring.
Adding these details to your Harry Potter scavenger hunt will help to set the scene and get the kids in a playful mood