Hosting an Easter Egg Hunt for Toddlers

Easter egg hunts are a great time for kids and the perfect activity to kick off the spring season. While you can simply toss some eggs out on the lawn for little ones to find, you can also make your egg hunt event a little more memorable.

Whether you've decided to host an Easter egg hunt for two or 20 kids, consider adding a twist with these ​fun ideas that turn it into more of a game. You'll also discover a few helpful tips for making any hunt a success. Hop to it!​

Scavenger Hunt

Multi-ethnic girls searching for Easter eggs
Ariel Skelley/Getty Images

Turn your Easter egg hunt into a scavenger hunt! It's a fun idea that encourages kids to look for specific eggs and a perfect way to practice distinguishing colors and shapes.

To put on a scavenger egg hunt, write out or draw a simple list of different types of eggs you'd like the children to find. For example, "3 Green Eggs, 4 Blue Eggs, and 1 Polka-Dot Egg." Whoever finds all the eggs on their list first wins a prize.

Make sure you have enough of each type of egg for each child. You don't want to be short one blue egg and disappoint someone.

Find the Basket

If the Easter Bunny brings your child an Easter basket as well, turn the egg hunt into a search mission.

Fill some of the plastic eggs with picture clues of where the basket can be found. If it's in your family room, for example, include drawings of items that can be found in that room, such as a television, a couch, and a fish tank.

Once all the clues have been gathered, see if your little one can figure out where the basket has been hidden.

Make It a Team Effort

While it is fun to have kids search for Easter eggs on their own, it's also fun to work in teams. A perfect and often hilarious way to do this is to pair kids up with grown-ups or older children and have a three-legged Easter egg hunt.

If you are hosting a crowd and fear that the hunt will go too quickly, turn egg hunting into a relay. Line the participants up (if you have more than four kids, you can even make teams), letting each one go one at a time to find an egg.

Map It Out

Turn your hunt for Easter eggs into a treasure hunt. Create a map using pictures that show the little ones where the eggs can be found.

To make it even more fun, have another map waiting with more clues in some of the spots you've designated. They'll have fun following the trail you lead them on and it's a great way to encourage their problem-solving skills. Be sure to have someone to help in case a child gets stuck and begins to get frustrated.

Find Your Name

This game is a good one for kids who recognize letters or who are just starting to. The goal is to find eggs marked with the letters found in each child's name, making it a great way to practice the alphabet.

Some children may need help with this hunt, so have adults or older children around who can lend a hand. You can also write out each child's name on a piece of paper so they know what shapes to look for. 

To set it up, write one letter per egg so they collectively spell out a child's name. Double check to make sure you don't miss any letters. When it's time for the hunt, ask each child to "find your name." The one who finds all their letters the fastest could win a prize.

Tips for a Successful Easter Egg Hunt

Egg hunts really are quite easy and fun to plan, though a few tips will ensure everyone has a great time.

To make sure everyone gets a fair amount, divide the kids by age: three and under hunt in one room, four- and five-year-olds in another, and older kids in a third. If the area isn't large enough or dividing the house or yard isn't practical, consider assigning each age group a color to look for.

Make sure you have enough eggs so no one feels left out. Ten to twelve per child is a good goal.

Hide the eggs with varying degrees of difficulty that are age-appropriate:

  • For little ones, eggs should be out in the open. Toss them on a blanket or in a sunny patch of the yard.
  • For preschoolers, choose obvious spots like behind the door, on the couch, in the mailbox, or in a potted plant.
  • Older children will expect to hunt a bit. Have fun really hiding the eggs in places like drawers, up in a tree (carefully), or under a throw rug.

Set Some Ground Rules

To make sure that everyone has a good time, it's best to set some rules in advance. In order to avoid problems, it's also important to make your wishes known before the fun begins.

  • Set boundaries so kids know where they don't need to look. For instance, tell them that eggs are not hidden in the bathroom for indoor hunts, or past a certain fence when outside.
  • If you need to, let kids know if there is a certain number of eggs they are allowed to find.
  • If you don't want them to run, say so.

Plan a Rain Date

Ideally, the day of your Easter egg hunt will be bright, clear, and warm. However, the weather doesn't always cooperate, especially in early spring! That's why it is important for you to have an alternative at the ready.

Whether you move everyone inside or have a rain date in mind, make sure that all of your guests know the details of what is going to happen. With a good plan in place, everyone will have just as much fun. You may just have to get a little creative to pull it off.

By Amanda Rock
Amanda Rock, mom of three, has spent more than a decade of her professional career writing and editing for parents and children.