“I found one!” A four-year-old shouted with delight as he held up a colorful plastic egg.  The other children crowded around him as he cracked the egg open. Inside was a chocolate. Rather than stuff the treat in his own mouth, the four-year-old smiled and handed it to one of his friends. His friend said, “Thank you,” his face full of surprise.

The activity was part of the Core Values Academy (CVA) in Seattle. The weekly program focuses on providing children ages 4-16 with age-appropriate lessons to support families in cultivating important character traits, values and spirituality.

The assignment was to work together in pairs to find hidden treasures that included a special tasks for the kids to complete to demonstrate unconditional love towards their peers and teachers.

The four-year-old was instructed to give his chocolate away to his friend. His happy face showed that giving is a joyful experience.

A major value that the Core Values Academy focuses on is living for the sake of others.

Teaching children at a very young age to consider the needs of others and serve others, not only cultivates a critical ethic in the child, it brings joy as they learn to give value to others.

CVA supports empowering children with the confidence and conviction that they have something valuable to offer their family, community and world.

You can try the treasure hunt at home with your children, or at your next community gathering.

Here are some example instructions you can include in the treasures:

  • Give a close adult (aunt, uncle, mom, dad) a hug and thank them for what they do for you everyday.
  • Compliment your partner.
  • Clean the area with your partner.
  • Give your treat away to your partner.
  • Even if it is your turn next, let your partner lead.