Family activity: how to have a chalk spider hunt

A chalk spider hunt is a great activity for younger children, or when mini beasts are feeling a bit hard to spot!

This activity is great fun and a good way for toddlers to learn about searching for mini beasts when the real thing feels a bit small and hard to spot, or if they are still learning to be gentle. It is also a handy activity to do in areas where you don’t have a lot of natural features, but plenty of surfaces to draw on.

Chalk is a great tool for playing outdoors because it washes off in the rain - or washing it off with a bucket of water and a sponge or paint brush becomes a great follow up activity! And it doesn’t do the wildlife any harm. Just make sure you have permission if you’re not in your own garden.

Chalk spider hunt equipment

You will need

A piece of chalk - that's it!

Chalk spider and chalk

Basic Chalk Spider Hunt

Take the chalk and draw spiders all over your outdoor area. Try to put them in places where they might be found naturally, tucked up in corners or climbing tree trunks. Some surfaces are easier to draw on than others. Brick walls, sides of garages, wooden fences, garden furniture, stones and smooth barked trees all work well. Add spider webs and strands of silk for the spiders to hang from. How about chalking a fly into the web? Challenge your child to find all the spiders!

Chalk Spider Hunt Extensions

There are lots of ways to adapt the basic activity. Choose the ones that suit your child’s age and interests, and make up some more of your own together.

Chalk spider hunt big spider

Rainbow spiders – if you have different colours of chalk see if your child can spot a spider for each colour of the rainbow.

Two chalk spiders

Counting – Ask your child to count what they find. How many webs? How many spiders? How many flies? How many spiders of each colour? Older ones could chalk a table, bar chart or pictogram on an outside wall or paving slab to show their results.

Chalk spider on bench

Swap roles – get the children to do the chalking and make their own spider hunts for you or each other.

Spider activities – make a spider day of it! Practice counting how many legs a spider has (8!) and sing Incy-Wincy Spider with actions. Use our tree shaking activity to hunt for spiders in your garden. Have you got any books about spiders? Collect twigs and stones and make your own spider – you could use play dough, clay or thick mud to make the body.

All sorts of mini-beasts – branch out from spiders and see how many different types of mini-beast you and your child can chalk in the garden. Can you find any real ones too? You could use one of our spotter sheets to identify what you find.

Minibeast detective spotter sheet
Garden minibeasts spotter sheet
Bug hotel by Amy Lewis

Bug hotel by Amy Lewis

You could even get stuck in and build a bug hotel! You can read our online how-to guide by following the link below.

Make a bug hotel

We'd love to see pictures of what you've been up to!

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