A Digital Scavenger Hunt

Staying in touch with distant friends is easier than ever thanks to today’s technology. Here is a fun way to connect with family and friends from across the street or around the world: a digital camera scavenger hunt.

First, compile a list of 10-15 interesting items for the players to scavenge with their digital cameras. Decide on a time period for snapping the photos and a deadline for uploading the photos.

Next, sign up for a free photo-sharing account on the internet. A simple internet search of “photo sharing” brings up hundreds of websites dedicated to sharing photos online. Most services allow you to upload your images, create a free album, and invite others to view it. Others allow multiple users to access a central website where each member can upload his or her own individual albums. This is ideal for the scavenger hunt but may require additional steps in setting up each member’s access. Be sure to choose a password-protected site.

Finally, email an invitation to your circle of family and friends. Be sure to include the list, rules, deadline, and the photo-sharing web address along with the password for viewing and uploading photos. As the deadline approaches, email a quick reminder.

Here’s a sample email invitation:

Subject: Digital Scavenger Hunt

Is your family’s digital camera collecting dust? Charge those batteries, clear the memory card, and let’s go on a digital scavenger hunt!

Photograph the following items between and :
1. Your house or room
2. Favorite T-Shirt
3. Any animal within a mile of your house that is not a pet
4. Self portrait: you eating an ice cream cone
5. Mom without makeup (or Dad before shaving)
6. A beloved piece of art
7. An image that you feel represents your town or country (example: a windmill in Holland or a taxi in New York)
8. A treasure – anything dear to you
9. A flower from your yard
10. Something bizarre

Once you’ve snapped all of your photos, upload them to the photo sharing website ____________________. Use user name: _______ and password: ______. Come back after the deadline of ________ and view everyone else’s albums. Don’t forget to add comments and vote for your favorite image. Thanks for playing with me and sharing a slice of your life. Be sure and treat yourself to an ice cream cone for the self-portrait!

A simple internet search of “photo sharing” brings up hundreds of websites dedicated to sharing photos online. Most services allow you to upload your images, create a free album, and invite others to view it. Others allow multiple users to access a central website where each member can upload his or her own individual albums. This is ideal for the scavenger hunt but may require additional steps in setting up each member’s access. Be sure to choose a password-protected site.
� www.shutterfly.com: Free online photo sharing and printing services
� www.kodakgallery.com: This former Ofoto website offers free password protected albums along with photo editing. Film users can get involved also. Simply send film in postage paid mailers, view and share prints online.
� www.webshots.com: Free online photo sharing, photo downloads, mobile phone compatible, optional premium upgrade with more features.
� www.flickr.com: Free private album sharing, integrates with popular blogs, group photo pools so an entire group of people can post their pictures.
� www.snapfish.com: Free photo sharing, also accepts film.
� www.myphotoalbum.com: This free photo-sharing website allows others to add comments and vote on photos. It offers the ability to add members who can interact with albums. Private or public settings.
� www.comehome.net: Free family home page that allows multiple users to sign on. Password protected, this site includes a shared calendar, photo sharing, recipe exchange, and more

That’s it, a simple new twist on an age old game. Have fun.

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