26 kids kicked off the first ever Letterboxing Program here at the library last Thursday, June 20. Letterboxing combines the fun of a treasure hunt with the art of stamping. Traditional letterboxing is an outdoor adventure, so we tweaked it a little to be indoors in a much smaller space.
The kick-off event consisted of two activities: making stamps and testing the kids’ skills in finding our small hidden boxes. For the scavenger hunt, each box included a pre-made stamp and were hidden throughout the library. (We couldn’t use the ones they just made because they had to be hidden ahead of time.) Most of the boxes were held by strong magnets to the underside of shelves, metal display racks, or carts. The kids, who were in grades 3-6, were put in teams and given a list of directional clues. If carefully read and sequentially followed, all the clues resulted in found boxes. Some kids needed refreshers on right vs. left and baby vs. regular vs. giant steps! But the kids were good-natured about it all and thought it was great fun. Once they found the box, they brought the box and stamp back to our desk to stamp in the library’s Letterboxing Logbook. Then they signed their names and dated the entry. The prize for each was a red Twizzler.
The stamps that the kids made at the program were made from art gum erasers or foam shapes and letters glued on film canisters. They took these home after the program.
This letterboxing scavenger hunt is now open up to all kids ages 5 through grade 12. A new box will be hidden each week for the duration of the Summer Library Club, with plans to continue the activity at various times during the year, perhaps at the holidays and spring breaks.