Posted in grandparenting, Life

The joy of rock painting

My four-year-old grandson and I have a new craft for those days he spends with us: rock painting.

We got the idea when we purchased a cheap rock painting kit at Hobby Lobby. The kit came with a bunch of rocks, but hardly any paint, and one lousy brush. There is no way we could paint rocks to look like the ones on the box. But we wanted to.

So I got to work. We had a nice assortment of craft paint brushes here at home. We had some paint mixing trays, too. I ordered a rainbow selection of craft acrylic paints on Amazon. I went to Hobby Lobby and found 40% off bags of rocks. I bought two bags (about a dozen rocks each) for $4. Now we’re ready to do this right.

I spread out the plastic craft tablecloth on the dining room table and we got to work. We used every single color to paint every single rock. We used a different brush for each color, and when they all had paint on them, I rinsed them out and we got back to work. He did mostly solid colors. I painted a few rocks al one color, and when they dried, added a sea creature. That’s what we originally wanted to do. I painted a sea turtle, a jellyfish, an angel fish, a flamingo, and a dolphin.

The next week, his older brother got involved and we painted rainbows and Roblox characters (Barry the Prison Guard and Papa Pizza). We didn’t have to buy more rocks. You can paint them over and over again.

So what is so fascinating and satisfying about painting rocks? For a while it was a very popular medium. Our public library has a rock garden out front where you can leave or paint rocks. A rock is a small enough canvas that it doesn’t take long to finish a project. It dries quickly and you can just stick it in your pocket to take home. For a preschooler, it’s all about quantity, not quality. Rocks are cheap and you and put a whole lot of paint on a whole bunch of rocks in a short amount of time.

We store up all our rocks in used egg cartons. They are ready to go the next time we are inspired to paint!

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