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How Two Boys Are Piloting a Playmobil Ship Around the World

After sailing from Scotland, the HMS Adventure has already reached the coast of Venezuela.

Last May, Ollie and Harry Ferguson, two young brothers from Scotland, launched a Playmobil model pirate ship from their hometown of Peterhead. Titled the HMS Adventure, the plastic ship has a counterweight to keep it right side up and a note telling anyone who finds the ship to release it back into the ocean, has now made its way all the way to its current location off the coast of Venezuela.

Launching the boat is part of 500 separate adventures the boys are undertaking with their parents, some of which are set to include going on a desert expedition and throwing paper planes from the highest mountain they can find. The Ferguson brothers have already sent a Lego man to space with a weather balloon attached to a GoPro camera and figured out how to keep a snowman alive for a year. In fact, the two boys have completed a healthy chunk of the list, but they plan to knock out as many as they can before the eldest of them turns 18 years old.

In an interview with Quartz, the boy’s father explained that the point of the list was to encourage them both to have fun, get engaged with different communities, and most importantly always be learning something new. “Everything we do has an element of learning in it,” the father said. It would be hard to suggest the boys aren’t doing exactly that.

This is STEM learning on a way more interactive level. It takes more than a little finesse to launch a weather balloon into space or use GPS and an awareness of ocean currents to track a tiny model ship as it travels the world. While the boys are knocking experiences off of the list with some parental guidance, their willingness to see the projects through is honestly remarkable enough.

You can track the location of the ship for yourself here.

Here is our complete list of 500 adventures and challenges. The list is flexible, can change if we think of something new and should be a lot of fun to try!- Some are small some are big.- Some take minutes some take days or even weeks.- Some require careful planning some will be opportunistic.- Some will only be possible when the boys get much older.- Some are huge in planning, logistics and effort.- Some teach lessons, the importance of charity, or community.- Others are for the sheer pleasure of silliness and fun.Any suggestions for other challenges or adventures are most welcome.The list is provided for all to use.1. Find buried treasure ✔️2. Conquer a new land ✔️3. Explore the deepest jungle4. Build a shelter in the woods to sleep in5. Go on a desert expedition6. Launch a rocket7. Have a shower in a waterfall8. Survive a zombie outbreak ✔️9. See the northern lights ✔️10. Go orienteering ✔️11. Bag a rarity ✔️12. World’s biggest snowman13. Have a Roman banquet ✔️14. Go sand sledging ✔️15. Catch a fish with a net ✔️16. Feed a bird from your hand ✔️17. Catch ten rainbows in photographs ✔️18. Save up to buy something big ✔️19. Paper planes from the highest mountain20. Raise butterflies ✔️21. Do a scavenger hunt ✔️22. Watch an eclipse ✔️23. Attract twenty bird species to the garden ✔️24. Help animals survive the winter25. Create a family tradition ✔️26. Explore a shipwreck ✔️27. Visit ten historic sites ✔️28. See a golden eagle29. Watch a sunrise30. Be a Neanderthal ✔️31. Hunt for seashells ✔️32. Go on a road trip33. Watch dolphins ✔️34. Rock pooling ✔️35. Visit a seabird colony ✔️36. Find the oldest dated gravestone37. Do a Tree top obstacle course ✔️38. Visit a national park ✔️39. Go to jail ✔️40. Cast metal ✔️41. Catch butterflies ✔️42. Carve pumpkins ✔️43. Make a parachute44. Feather headdress ✔️45. Find the Bennachie dragon ✔️46. Go worm charming ✔️47. Climb a tree ✔️48. Go wave hopping 49. Science Festival ✔️50. Toast marshmallows ✔️51. Pay it forward ✔️52. Slime 53. Explore coastline from the sea ✔️54. Message in a bottle ✔️55. Make a movie56. Poo sticks ✔️57. Camp in hammocks ✔️58. Make landscape art59. Host a mini Olympics ✔️60. Make some art for the house ✔️61. Collect sea glass ✔️62. Take on the elements. All of them. ✔️63. Roll down a really big hill ✔️64. Fly a kite ✔️65. Make an airfix model ✔️66. A surprise for Ollie67. Have a Snail race ✔️68. Eat an apple straight from a tree69. Have an outdoor movie night ✔️70. Make rubbings ✔️71. Go to Disney72. Solve a mysterious mystery73. Build an Igloo 74. Go indoor camping ✔️75. Be a superhero ✔️76. Do apple bobbing ✔️77. Collect and play conkers ✔️78. Do indoor potholing ✔️79. Go crabbing ✔️80. Make a sand sculpture81. Go to the theatre ✔️82. Go troll hunting ✔️83. Make popcorn without a lid ✔️84. Engage in piracy85. Storm a castle ✔️86. Have an epic snowball fight87. Ride on a steam train88. Play truant from school ✔️89. Learn about an extinct animal ✔️90. A surprise for harry91. An eating challenge ✔️92. Go to a car race ✔️93. Keep a snowman alive for a year ✔️94. Play in a rock band ✔️95. Feed lambs ✔️96. Make monster tracks & scare the locals97. Go to a live music concert98. Harry’s choice99. Build a snow fort100. Dishwasher cooking101. Go to a big sports event102. Send secret valentines103. Ride a tractor ✔️104. Go up the down escalator105. Plant, grow, eat ✔️106. Catch snowflakes on your tongues ✔️107. Be king for the day108. Cook in clay ✔️109. Fly seed helicopters ✔️110. Build a secret den ✔️111. Make a catapult ✔️112. Create amazing ice cubes113. Twenty parks in a day ✔️114. Make a rainbow115. Bubble wands ✔️116. Make a cactus garden ✔️117. Snog a frog. Kiss a puddock ✔️118. Time in chalk shadow119. Make a fairy ring120. Find a smugglers cave ✔️121. Sleep in a bothy122. Mission to Mars ✔️123. Create your own style ✔️124. Build a waterslide125. Erect an inukshuk126. Painting pots ✔️127. Make something from natural materials ✔️128. Choose a species to protect129. A random act of kindness130. Read a banned book ✔️131. Track wild animals132. Make a driftwood shelter ✔️133. Visit the NHM ✔️134. Grow crystals135. Make a bird feeder ✔️136. Find a bird’s nest ✔️137. Learn to speak another language138. Explore a hill fort ✔️139. Bank seeds to grow next year ✔️140. Go to a living history event ✔️141. Cross a river without getting wet ✔️142. Make something from the strandline143. Make a Butterfly bar144. Create a nature photo-journal145. Build a luxury bird bath 146. Time thunder and lighting147. Grow plants in a glass148. Make a pooter149. Find canopy bugs150. Build a bivouac151. Unearth a fossil ✔️152. Seaweed safari ✔️153. Dragonfly hunt154. Visit a lighthouse ✔️155. Go metal detecting ✔️156. Watch a seal haul out site ✔️157. Hear a dawn chorus158. Go on a safari159. Forage at low tide and cook160. Bivi bagging ✔️161. Ride the funicular ✔️162. Wildlife hotels163. Ride a combine harvester ✔️164. Build a pitfall trap ✔️165. Do an insect safari166. Make and test an anemometer167. Build a log pile house168. Woodlouse maze ✔️169. Grow hitchhiker seeds170. Frame pressed flowers171. Make leaf skeletons 172. Explore a ruin ✔️173. Do a 1000 piece puzzle174. Erect a tent ✔️175. Make snow tea ✔️176. Learn how to use tools ✔️177. Bake bread ✔️178. Do a magic trick179. Learn CPR180. Walk on stilts ✔️181. Lego World Tour ✔️182. Make a twig raft ✔️183. Disassemble an old appliance ✔️184. Have a mud bath ✔️185. Slide down a fire pole ✔️186. Sleep at the top of a mountain187. Plan and go camper vanning188. Race to the Pole189. The Jungle Temple challenge190. Retrace the Beagle expedition191. Build a tree house192. Watch a meteor shower193. Go surfing194. Do a winter summit195. Choose a good cause to support ✔️196. See 100 bird species in one day197. Arboreal traverse198. Invent an entirely new sport199. Call an owl ✔️200. Try slacklining ✔️201. Learn to Juggle202. Make a family newspaper203. Plan, shop, and cook a meal ✔️204. Make a trebuchet205. Go skiing ✔️206. Make decisions by dice207. Hold a snake208. Hold a Butterfly species marathon209. Sledge down a mountain210. Make a primordial soup211. Take photographs of the seabed ✔️212. Small mammal detection213. Make a fossil for the future214. Ten keepie uppies215. Get lost in a maze ✔️216. The ten mammal marathon217. Start a rock collection218. Bird bingo 219. Find space rocks220. Watch an otter in the wild221. Go on an archaeological dig ✔️222. Go geocaching ✔️223. Go fossil hunting224. Climb a mountain via own route225. Go on a nature walk at night226. Be a rockhound227. Go abseiling228. Make a time capsule ✔️229. Sleep in a haunted castle ✔️230. Do a paper chase231. Write a play and perform it232. Identify birdcalls ✔️233. Make candles ✔️234. Learn to sign ✔️235. Hit a bullseye 236. Fly a falcon ✔️237. Go to a music festival238. Snorkel a river, lake & ocean239. Ride the waves240. Go jousting ✔️241. Go wild swimming242. Viking funeral ✔️243. Find a Selkie244. A surprise for mummy245. Movie magic ✔️246. Have a really fancy afternoon tea ✔️247. Make a scrapbook248. Make a life soundtrack249. Go ice-skating ✔️250. Invent a new species251. Eat a bug ✔️252. Go to a highland games253. Create a Scooby Sandwich ✔️254. Create a secret society255. Have a food fight256. Make a wigwam257. Learn Ninja skills258. Visit Legoland ✔️259. Daddy’s choice260. Celebrate half birthdays ✔️261. Have a water balloon fight ✔️262. Have a midnight feast ✔️263. Watch a silent movie264. Muddy puddles ✔️265. Build a monster leaf pile 266. Make a bumblebee box267. Create a bee friendly garden 268. See sunspots269. Go body boarding ✔️270. Collect 20 shells ✔️271. Mushroom spore pictures272. Lie down and listen273. Nature treasure hunt274. Measure hailstones275. Make compost276. Help birds nest ✔️277. Dissect Owl pellets ✔️278. Observe rainwater life279. Feather collection280. Measure rainfall for a year281. Tag and track ✔️282. Make a stone float283. Make a wormery ✔️284. Measure tree age ✔️285. Follow in the footsteps of a hero286. Have a disability for the day287. Read a classic288. Paint a self-portrait289. Go to an art gallery ✔️290. Eat the world291. Dissect an animal292. Do a scientific experiment ✔️293. Help an elderly person294. Break the rules ✔️295. Make a collection296. Create a flag ✔️297. Help someone at xmas ✔️298. Watch an animal give birth299. Drive a car ✔️300. Fish for tea and cook on a fire ✔️301. Learn sword skills302. Have an archery competition ✔️303. Make a meal out of foraged food304. Build a bridge305. Skin and cook a rabbit306. Explore a tunnel ✔️307. Learn tracks and signs308. Make a wildlife hide ✔️309. Light a fire without matches ✔️310. Navigate using a map & compass311. Learn to play chess312. Make a bow and arrow ✔️313. Learn first aid ✔️314. Clubhouse ✔️315. Play a musical instrument316. Feather for mackerel317. Ride a horse ✔️318. Row a boat319. Leave a trail to be followed320. Try curling321. Tickle a trout ✔️322. Teach the dog a new trick323. Make some jewellery324. Rebuild the death star ✔️325. Learn to dance326. Make a map327. Make a fish trap328. Cast footprints329. Droppings id330. Make Camouflage to watch wildlife331. Train bees332. Spider web catchers ✔️333. Make a waterfall334. Create a woodland terrarium335. Follow ants ✔️336. Bee id337. Test bird brains338. Wall or roof gardening339. Watch a newt grow340. Coasteering341. Inflatable portaging342. Go hunting ✔️343. Sleep in a stone circle344. Mini Everest climb345. Spend the night in a cave346. Follow a river from source to sea347. Be modern day Robinson Crusoe348. Make a raft349. Ghyll scramble350. Mountain bike a mountain351. Make a pond352. Get a story in the local paper ✔️353. Get behind a waterfall ✔️354. Go on a zip line355. Write and publish a story356. Make furniture out of driftwood357. See dawn to dusk in the same day358. Do a 5 till 9 adventure359. Make nettle soup ✔️360. Go on a reptile hunt361. Compose a song362. Invent something and build it363. Do an obstacle course364. Make a lobster pot & catch dinner365. Drink milk from a cow366. Mother hen Challenge ✔️367. Cook a cockatrice368. Send a balloon camera into space ✔️369. Complete an assault course370. Climb a volcano371. Find some cave paintings372. Build a cairn373. Do a river float374. Explore a foreign city375. Go whale watching376. Find a trig point ✔️377. Be lost and find your way back378. Go on a long hike379. Watch a badger den ✔️380. Explore a Broch381. Set up a moth trap ✔️382. Explore using an ancient map383. Watch bats at night ✔️384. Ride in a vintage car ✔️385. Explore a tall ship386. Blindfold map home387. Pan for gold ✔️388. Go white water rafting389. A surprise for daddy390. Have an outside birthday391. Make a rope swing392. Swim in the rain393. Go paintballing394. Bid at an auction395. Go to a ceilidh396. Plan & execute a jewel heist397. Go to a musical398. Paint a mural399. Send balloon gifts into the ether400. Go incognito401. Go on the biggest rollercoaster402. Escape from Colditz403. Go Karting404. Ollie’s choice405. Go rock climbing ✔️406. Help for Neonatal407. Do charity work abroad408. Work on a farm ✔️409. Take a stand410. Discover local history411. Map the solar system412. Live in a different era413. Make a mistake and learn from it414. Photograph the Milky Way415. Help a friend416. Do a beach clean ✔️417. Help an injured animal ✔️418. Make a pinhole camera419. Help somebody who is stuck420. Recycle something thrown away421. Be homeless for a night422. Fungi id423. Organise an expedition424. Go Sailing ✔️425. Go bouldering ✔️426. Do a backflip427. Make a signal fire428. Cook on a rock ✔️429. Change a wheel430. Set a Wentworth trap ✔️431. Make charcoal and draw with it432. Go on a reconnaissance mission433. Take a panoramic photo ✔️434. Create a new recipe and cook it435. Cuillin ridge overnight436. Explore a kelp forest437. Coast to Coast438. Three-peak challenge439. Bog snorkelling440. Go night swimming441. Go quad biking442. Dinner at the top of a mountain443. Cook the days meals on a fire444. Go caving445. See a basking shark446. Walk on a glacier447. Stick a pin in the map and visit448. Take part in art ✔️449. Run a trail race450. Play extreme golf451. Have a beach bonfire party452. Have a movie marathon453. Spend a holiday in a cabin454. Mummy’s choice455. Pick an obscure holiday and celebrate it ✔️456. Stargazing ✔️457. Domino pebbles ✔️458. Make lemonade459. Become a knight ✔️460. Tree swing461. Make a dinosaur garden ✔️462. Leave earths orbit ✔️463. Create a froggery ✔️464. Ten Castle Trail ✔️465. Cloud spotting466. Raise chickens ✔️467. Id and follow tracks ✔️468. Cook on a griddle ✔️469. Sieve a mudflat ✔️470. Make amber insects471. Grow stalactites472. Learn trail symbols ✔️473. Do a plant sense experiment474. Sunflower tracking475. Stone circles ✔️476. Learn to draw birds477. Id spider web types478. Work as a stablehand ✔️479. Create a sundial480. Insect sanctuary481. Use a quadrat or a tetrad482. Grow an oak tree483. Build a nestbox ✔️484. Lichen hunt 485. Attract butterflies486. Dance like no one is watching ✔️487. Cloud in a jar 488. Feed a carnivorous plant ✔️489. Spot the planets490. Do something that scares you491. Make an ice slide492. Cook on a spit ✔️493. Start a rebellion494. Do something for the community495. Pay something for the person behind you496. Do wildlife photography497. Indulge in luxury camping ✔️498. Go spear fishing499. See something truly spectacular500. The final adventure

Posted by The days are just packed on Sunday, January 28, 2018