Searching for Treasure in Loughborough

When you hear about people hunting for treasure, you tend to imagine some weather-beaten pirates digging on a sun-kissed Caribbean island, or perhaps Lara Croft braving booby traps in an overgrown jungle temple. One image not usually conjured up is a group of ULRs wandering around a park in Loughborough. However, on Monday 30th September 2019, that’s exactly what was going on.

treasure hunt

It was all to do with a new resource developed by unionlearn which can be used by trade unions to help members with their maths and their workplace well-being in addition to having a bit of fun.

The concept is simple: participants are given an instruction pack explaining how the treasure hunt works, complete with a set of ten codebooks, and a number of sealed envelopes. Then, they begin. At the first “station”, the first envelope is opened which contains a maths problem, a question pertaining to the location and some instructions. By solving the sum, answering the question and following the instruction, the participants can then crack the code which reveals the location of the next station.

After developing the concept, I then invited comrades from PCS to help trial it out. Together, we worked out a hunt around Loughborough’s historic Queen’s Park which ULRs could try out as part of a learning day which was organised for Loughborough on that day. Three teams of ULRs eagerly competed against each other to be the first back in an activity which received wholly positive feedback. PCS Midlands RLO, Mark Robinson said, “The treasure hunt was brilliant. Everyone enjoyed it and it was great to see them working together to solve the maths puzzles and crack the code. I definitely think that this is an idea that can be adapted to workplaces everywhere.”

Participating ULR Herma Hughes from DWP Birmingham, told me, “I loved the way in which we used our maths knowledge in a fun way whilst learning something about a beautiful area.”

So, following the successful trial, why not organising a unionlearn treasure hunt in your workplace? The benefits to members are several:

  • A maths workout
  • Getting members active
  • Increased knowledge of the local area
  • Improved team-working
  • It’s fun!

So, why not give it a go? Get in touch with me on [email protected] for a free pack and start hunting for treasure in your workplace!

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Matt Pointon

Matt Pointon is a Project Officer working in the unionlearn Strategy team. He has worked for a number of trade unions in the UK and overseas prior to joining the TUC. Matt looks after English, maths and Apprenticeship support and is currently completing his MA in Creative Writing.