an assortment of stacked rocks painted in the colours of the rainbow


How to Make Rainbow Stone Stackers — Beautiful Craft Activity for Kids

Mar 14, 2018

These colourful stacking stones are fun to make and play with. But they’ll also help preschoolers develop a variety of skills and the rainbow colours are perfect for celebrating St. Patrick’s Day, spring or Pride.

We love using beach stones for crafts and activities here in my daycare. The children enjoy exploring the texture, shape and weight of the stones, and we always have a good time collecting them when we’re at the beach.

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Today we’re using our stones to make a colourful stacking and balancing activity. It's a terrific way for the younger children in our daycare to learn about sorting and ordering items by size and the colour of the rainbow (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet), and it will also challenge their fine-motor skills and co-ordination.

Let me show you how easy it is to make a set of stacking stones so you can whip up a set for your kids.

What You'll Need

  • smooth beach stones
  • paint brushes
  • acrylic craft paint
  • acrylic craft sealer

How It's Made

Before we started, I went through our collection of beach stones and sorted them into sets of six. I made sure the stones in each set were similar in shape and that they ranged in size from largest to smallest. I also tested to make sure each set would balance perfectly before giving them to the hooligans to paint.

The first thing the hooligans did when I gave them their stones was wash and dry them to make sure they were free of dirt and debris. Then they stacked their stones in order from largest to smallest. This made it easy to paint the stones in proper rainbow order. They simply plucked the smallest stone from the top of the stack and painted it purple. The next stone, they painted blue, followed by green and so on.

The kids gave each of their stones a couple of coats of acrylic craft paint, letting the paint dry thoroughly between each coat. If you want to speed up the drying process, just give the stones a blast with a hairdryer.

When our painted stones were completely dry, we gave them a coat of clear acrylic craft varnish which made the colours really pop and gave the stones a nice sheen. The varnish will also protect the paint from scratching or chipping.

And now, our rainbow stones are ready to play with.

Have your kids try to stack them up without knocking over their tower. This will be challenging for young children because it requires a steady hand and placing the stones just so (like Jenga!).

Older kids will enjoy playing with the stones as well. To make the activity more challenging, have them stack their stones in reverse order, starting with the smallest stone on the bottom!

Article Author Jackie Currie
Jackie Currie

Read more from Jackie here.

Jackie Currie is a mother, daycare provider, and the creative spirit behind the blog Happy Hooligans. A self-proclaimed glitterphobe, she specializes in easy, affordable arts & crafts and good, old-fashioned play.

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