A New Kind of Egg Hunt

New Egg Hunt (1)

 

I don’t like Easter Egg Hunts. In fact, if it was up to me, we wouldn’t even do one.

And right now you’re probably thinking, Why in the world don’t you like egg hunts???? The kids love them! 

For starters, they have absolutely nothing to do with what Easter is even about, but that’s another story for another blog on another day…

What I really can’t stand is how we spend every minute of every day trying to teach our kiddos to treat each other with kindness, to share, to let others go first, to take turns.

But then…

On egg hunt day, all that goes out the window. We lay brightly colored eggs filled with all kids of yummy treats all around our playground, and then it’s every man for himself!

In that instant, we are telling them that it’s not only OK to be greedy and selfish, but it’s actually encouraged in this venue.

Even if we even things out at the end of the egg hunt so that everyone has the same number of eggs, even if we use a system of numbers to ensure each kiddo only gets her fair share, even if we do everything in our power to create a “fair” egg hunt, we are still fostering greed and selfishness.

I mean, think about it. Have you ever seen a group of kids calmly walk to go find their 12 eggs when you say it’s time to start??? NO! They run, they scream, they go as fast as they can to get the eggs first. They want the biggest ones or the prettiest ones or (heaven help you if someone sends this kind..) the golden ones!

As soon as we say, “Ready, set, GO!” we might as well be saying, “Forget everything else I’ve taught you this year, and go get those eggs!”

I just don’t like it. Like I said, I wouldn’t even do it if it was up to me.

But it’s not.

So, if I’m going to have to do an egg hunt, I figure I might as well use it as a teaching opportunity, right? So, here’s what I did…

We had and Easter egg hunt AND SHARE! We still set a limit on how many eggs each kiddo could get, but here’s the kicker: They weren’t allowed to find eggs for themselves. They each had a buddy, and the eggs they found were for their buddies, not for themselves.

So, we talked about asking your buddy which size or color or type they liked the best. We talked about staying together so that your buddy would be close by when you found an egg for him. We talked about NOT putting eggs in your own basket. We even practiced earlier in the day during our math time with a “Shape Hunt & Share.”

Most of my kiddos did a great job with it! I could hear them saying things like, “Isaac! I found one for you!” or “Jasmine, do you like this one?” It was SO much better than the “normal” way of doing it! I loved watching them think of their buddies over themselves! They were giving and sharing instead of taking and being selfish!

Now, don’t get me wrong… We are 4 years old. And there were a few kiddos who just couldn’t grasp the concept. So, we just had to give those kiddos a little extra  guidance while they were hunting. (And maybe move some eggs from their baskets into their buddies’ baskets!)

But, overall, it was great success! Sure, I’ll make some adjustments to it next time around, but for now I’m extremely happy with how it went!

Happy Easter and Happy Teaching!!

4 Comments

  1. Kate Greer says:

    I really understand what you are saying about egg hunts. I want to tell you what happened at ours this year. While there are always going to be children that will be out for themselves (many adults are the same), my students had an egg carton in which they could select 12 eggs and they did, but then a surprising thing happened. Our focus all year has been on being kind, sharing with each other, and taking care of each other. We talk about it from day one, we practice with each other, and over all they are very good at this. When we had a new student start in Feb. they saw him standing around not sure what to do and purposefully asked him to come play with them. Melted my heart. Now back to my story the kids were searching for their eggs and their cartons were getting full and they kind of looked around to see what the others were doing and then the magic happened. They handed their cartons to an adult to hold and started helping the ones who were not finding eggs, “here is one for you a——, etc. Children need opportunities to practice what we are trying to teach them. If they are not given the chance to practice what they are learning, it will not become a habit of thinking of others. I hope you have a very Blessed Easter!

    Like

  2. Stella says:

    Awesome twist to a tradition!
    Thanks so much for sharing.
    I will certainly pass this on with many others who need to know.
    Have a fulfilling Easter break.

    Like

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