Child’s play with rocks starts almost as soon as little ones can pick them up and may last a lifetime. They are not a toy, but definitely great for play.
A small rock is just the right size for a child’s hand. When it gets warm, kids find a rock comforting to hold. Available in an endless variety of sizes, shapes, textures, and colors, kids can play with them in an endless variety of ways too.
Rocks are made for throwing. In puddles, lakes, and oceans. Over and over, kids will throw rocks, watch the ripples, and listen for the splash. Small rocks are made for digging and dumping, either with pails and shovels, or with diggers and dump trucks. Some are just the right size for carrying, and others so big kids want to climb them.
One of the ways that kids play with rocks is by sorting them. This can be done over and over. A category can be rocks of one color, type, or shape. Big Sister calls one bunch of her rocks, her jelly beans because of their shape and another set, her pirate rocks because they look like jewels.
For kids, rocks have special magical powers. A rock might be part of pretend play, as in a treasure to be guarded or maybe one to find. Young kids—and grownups, collect rocks. Sometimes, the collection stays the size of pockets, but other times, it grows to shelves, boxes, and rooms.
Kids will find other ways to play with rocks. After any rock play, before doing laundry, check pockets. Rocks are not a friend to washing machines. They don’t feel so good in boots and shoes, either. Nevertheless, when it comes to kids and play, rocks really rock, don’t they?