As part of my new role as the Artist in Residence at The Urban Chalkboard I am planning and teaching drop in art activities for 18 month - 5 year old children. It's such a fun experience and I'm learning how to take more complicated projects and modify for younger kids. Stay tuned for lots more kids art tutorials to come in the near future!
One of the first projects that I planned is Story Stones. Story Stones are smooth flat rocks painted/decorated with a child's favorite characters, colors, and themes. Once completed he/she can tell a story using the stones as props/visual aides. This is a wonderful way for children to build vocabulary, learn how to structure a story (beginning, middle, end), and develop early reading skills.
Here is a quick tutorial including supplies needed to make these fun craft.
3-5 flat smooth stones (can be purchased at most craft stores)
Mod Podge or Elmer’s white glue thinned down with water
Cup of water
* Temporary tattoos
* Paint pens/markers
* Brightly colored/metallic Sharpies
* Glitter glue/glitter
* Small stencils plus tape to attach to stone
1. Wash and dry stones and set aside. Place on top of newspaper or cookie sheet for quick cleanup.
2. Select a temporary tattoo, paint, glue, etc. and begin applying design.
3. Wait about an hour for paint/glue to dry or you can use a blow dryer on the low heat setting to speed up the drying process.
4. Use a paintbrush to cover surface of stones with Mod Podge or watered down Elmer’s glue to help seal your child’s decorations. This is an optional step, but it helps design to stay looking new for longer.
5. Have your child tell you a story using the stones. :-)
1. Temporary tattoos are the easiest, fastest, least messy, and most affordable way to complete this activity. They come in lots of colors and designs that include many of your child’s favorite characters. Party stores have packs of 16 for as little as $.99!
2. If you’re concerned about your child constantly putting the stones in his/her mouth or damaging your home and possessions you can have him/her create paper “stones” instead by using heavy card stock cut in circles and decorated as listed above. To make them last even longer and help with ease of cleaning you can laminate them.
3. Let your child choose how to decorate his/her stones. Don’t worry about the end result being “perfect”. The most important thing is that he/she has fun making them and using them to tell his/her own unique story.