Start of main content
Age Range: 7-11
Duration: 30-59 mins
  • Maths

Halloween treasure hunt

Using coordinates, angles and directions to locate pirate treasure on a map

Locate buried treasure on a pirate map and develop your maths knowledge in this fun activity for kids!

In this exercise learners will look at different methods to find position and direction on a map. They will learn how to use coordinates and bearings using angle and distance. They will work with a pirate treasure map and a series of worksheets to work out where the treasure is. Differentiated worksheets are available, allowing the learners to progress from using simple coordinates and vector coordinates to polar coordinates using bearings with angles and distances.

Activity: Halloween treasure hunt

This is one of a set of free STEM resources developed to support the teaching of the primary national curriculum. They are designed to support the delivery of key topics within maths and science. This resource focuses on position and direction using vector and polar coordinates, with the theme of a pirate treasure map.

This activity could be used as a main lesson activity for KS2, to teach learners how to use coordinates and angles. Further number skills may be used to work out map scale and distances.

This exercise could be carried out as individuals or in pairs. The learners will find buried treasure on a pirate map, using various methods to find position and give direction.
Students will follow the instructions on the ‘Treasure Hunt’ worksheet and add the positions and lines of direction on the Treasure Map using a ruler and pencil.

The worksheets are progressive; The first worksheet uses coordinates, the second uses vector coordinates and the third worksheet uses polar coordinates.

How long will this activity take?

This activity will take approximately 40-60 minutes to complete.

Tools/resources required

  • Activity and worksheets
  • Protractors (360 degree)
  • Rulers
  • Pencils/Coloured pencils/Pens
  • Erasers

The engineering context

When planning to build new stadiums and large industrial sites, civil engineers need a good understanding of map reading skills to make sure that the buildings are built in exactly the right place. Engineers use special equipment to get the bearings and distance correct.

Suggested learning outcomes

By the end of this activity students will be able to describe a position on a map or grid, they will be able to give directions to a specific point on a map or grid using vector coordinates and they will be able to give directions to a specific point on a map or grid using polar coordinates.

Download the free Halloween treasure hunt activity sheet below!

All activity sheets and supporting resources are free to download, and all the documents are fully editable, so you can tailor them to your students’ and your schools’ needs.

The activity sheet includes teacher notes, guidance, useful web links, and links (where appropriate) to the national curriculum in each of the four devolved UK nations; England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

Please share your classroom learning highlights with us @IETeducation.

Related resources