"Hidden Pictures" has been in every single issue of "Highlights Magazine for Children" since its inception in 1946. Clearly one of the magazine's popular features, children love going on a search for hidden objects just as hide-and-seek is one of their favorite schoolyard games.
In the 1980s, "Where's Waldo" creator Martin Handford sparked an adult passion for the same thing: although in his case, you had to search-and-find a hidden red-and-white-striped character named "Waldo" in a book full of red herrings.
Whether you are a child or an adult, a challenge that calls on you to flex your powers of observation can be a lot of fun. It time to test how observant you are. You might find that you need a little honing of the eye-to-brain muscle. The puzzle world awaits.
Online Hidden Picture Games
You can improve your observation skills while having fun with some free online hidden object puzzles. Printable hidden picture puzzles are also available for the classroom environment or for those who prefer solving puzzles on paper.
- Highlights Magazine: A large number of themed hidden picture puzzles can be found here courtesy of the popular "Highlights Magazine for Children." Choose one of three difficulty levels to play online.
- Hidden Object Games: One of the largest online repositories for free hidden object games. There are themes like the circus, ghostly mystery story, Medieval times, or the Titanic, too.
- Hidden 4 Fun: There are nearly 2,000 hidden object games for you to choose from with every theme under the sun from cowboys and treasure hunters to spies and witches.
- Mom's Puzzle Games: Amuse yourself with these easy hidden object games to play on your computer.
- Color By Numbers: These printable, mosaic-style color-by-number puzzles are a good way for children to practice number recognition. Color the numbered geometric shapes in the indicated color to reveal the hidden picture.
Holiday- and Season-Themed Puzzles
These easy puzzles for children have themes pertaining to various holidays or seasons. Some of these games can be played online while others must be printed or solved on paper. You will find hidden object games among word searches and other brain-bogglers.
- 4th of July
- Cinco de Mayo
- Father's Day
- New Year's Day
- Valentine's Day
Hidden Picture Books for Children
In addition to a "Highlights" subscription, you might want to get a child a book with hidden pictures. There are quite a few books that feature kids' brainteasers, but two really popular titles to consider for hidden pictures are the "I Spy" series and "The Everything Kids' Hidden Picture Book."
- "I Spy" puzzle books: This is a delightful gift idea for young puzzlers. In this Scholastic Press series of children's books, author Jean Marzollo's riddles provide clues to objects hidden in stunning photographs by Walter Wick. Popular themes include animals, Santa Claus, Halloween, and more. This has become so popular that this series has expanded into a board game and video game series.
- The Everything Kids' Hidden Pictures Book: Sharpen your searching skills and see if you can find the objects hidden in these picture puzzles. You will want to grab a pencil and start exploring these creatively mastered puzzles. The reading level is from ages 9 to 12.