If you haven't seen painted rocks hidden in your neck of the woods, it's time to get on the bandwagon.
If you haven't heard of the painted rock phase, you probably will, soon. I first heard of painting rocks and hiding them on Facebook. It came across my news feed as a group I might be interested in joining. And Facebook was right! I was ecstatic to hear we had places around our town to find painted rocks!
So what's with all these painted rocks? Essentially painting rocks and hiding them is a community scavenger hunt. With very few clues, it's a hunt people of all ages can play, they don't need any skill, and it's fun. It's like finding a deer in the field in the summer, or a penny on the sidewalk.
Why paint rocks? Painting and crafting can be very therapeutic and painting rocks is no different. Plus, rocks are frequently free or very inexpensive and readily available. They withstand the elements (with a little clear coat) and are hard to break or damage.
Why hide rocks? Hiding rocks is an anonymous way to make a person's day. Just think of how excited a person gets when they find a penny or quarter on the sidewalk. A person searching for rocks feels the same way. There's the sense of accomplishment when you find something hidden!
Why search and find rocks? Some rocks contain their own inspirational message, words of encouragement, or favorite superhero character. These items are a way to spread kindness and make someone's day.
Materials Needed for Painted Rocks
- Acrylic Craft Paint - Individual Paints or Small Pot Sets work well
- Paint Brushes
- Decorative River Rocks (I grab mine from the Dollar Tree)
- Clear Spray Paint
- Permanent Markers
- Newspaper, Wax Paper, Paper Plates, Paper Towel and Water
There are no rules to painting rocks to hide. Anything goes. Literally ANYTHING. Most of our rock painting inspiration comes from a quick google image search on our phones. Just make sure you protect your surface with newspaper, paper plates or wax paper and let them dry completely.
My 4 year old started out painting well, and when he was done, he ended up with a nice plate of grey rocks. But don't worry, these rocks are just fine. When they were dry, I added some fun inspirational words. Can you find his hidden rock in the photo below?
Our community rock page encourages everyone to place a hashtag on their rocks and take a photo and share the hashtag. I added the hashtag to each of the rocks before spraying them with clear coat.
Here are some ideas for painting rocks:
- Simple Popular Characters Such as: Batman, Superman, Spiderman, Mickey Mouse, TMNT, Minions
- Animals: Birds, Ladybugs, Bees, Penguins, Dogs, Cats, Mice
- Rainbows, Hearts, Flowers, Stars, Emojis, Fun Faces
- Cupcakes, Ice Cream, Lollipos, m&m
- Baseballs, Basketballs, Footballs, Tennis Balls
- Inspirational Words: imagine, sing, be brave, smile, dance, you are loved, share, dream, make a wish, you rock, love, inspire, believe
We were out and about running errands and searching for rocks and found this little mouse hiding in the park! It's so much fun to find the rocks! When you find a rock, you can leave the rock right where it is, you can re-hide the rock or you can take the rock home! We usually re-hide the rock, although sometimes I let my kids keep them.
Need some other fun ideas for kids?