DIY Story Stones

Welcome to the Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores #teachcreativity Blog Hop! I'm so excited to partner with Jo-Ann and the other fabulous blog hosts to bring you some ways to spark creativity in your classroom.

Anyone have a few reluctant writers in their class? I bet the answer to that is a resounding YES! Sometimes these kids aren't so reluctant, they just need a push. Story stones provide a tactile and visual jump-start to the writing process. They help remove that blank stare (and blank paper) that often results from just giving the chid a generic prompt or even worse for some kids, the freedom to write about whatever they want.

And best of all, they are fun, easy, and inexpensive to make! I got all of the supplies for the project in one trip to Jo-Ann.

Apply stickers of your choice to the flat river rocks. Then apply a little puddle of Glossy Accents (about the size of a dime) on top of the sticker. Use a small foam brush to even out the puddle. I use a glove to keep the glue off my hands and bottle caps to keep the stones from sticking to the table. Yup, I have a whole container of bottle caps just in case!

Mod Podge can be used instead of the Glossy Accents, but I just don't have good luck with Mod Podge. I think it's the Florida humidity. It just never seems to dry for me. With the Glossy Accents, it's dry to the touch within about 30 minutes. It forms a great childproof-picking seal to the sticker and adds a nice shine.

Themed sticker packs make it easy to create an entire story, like these camping stickers from Me & My Big Ideas. You've got campers, a bear, a lost shoe, and how cute are those little fish? The story almost tells itself. 
After your little learners tell a few of these types of stories, they get the hang of what needs to be in a story: characters, setting, problem, and solution. Then eventually they'll start to transfer these things over to the writing process. It doesn't happen overnight, but it does happen!

Another fun thing to try is to have the kids tell a story with the stones, then have use the same stones to tell a different story.

You can also give a stuck writer a little boost with these story stones. Each one has a possible conflict that they can use in the story. Sometimes just letting them look though through a bag of stones like these will get their creative juices flowing.

How about a new way to assign research reports? Have each student reach into the can and pull out one stone. Whatever animal is on your stone becomes the subject of your research! 

If you want to make some story stones for your class, be sure you print out this coupon, it's a good one!
And don't forget to sign up for the Jo-Ann teacher reward program here to save every time you shop.

Don't miss the rest of the great projects this week:

Tuesday: Sunny Days in Second Grade

This review is part of a Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores® campaign. I received compensation for this review; 
however, this is my personal, honest opinion based on my experience.


  1. Love this idea! I do something a bit similar...a basket full of stickers.. They only pick 3.... They write using the 3 stickers they have chosen. Writing has really taken off but I am going to use the stones too! Writing is just a stone's throw away! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I love the idea of putting animals on the stones and having the kids research their animal. Great idea!

  3. I can't wait to make a set of story stones & try this out!

  4. What a fun idea! Can't wait to try it with my class :)

  5. What a great idea! I'm not a teacher but this would be great for my seven year old when she gets bored!

  6. Where did you get your rocks? I don't have a JoAnn's near me so I went to Hobby Lobby. They had rocks but not as big as these shown on your post.

  7. These are so sweet! I know my kiddos would be SO much more engaged being able to manipulate these little rocks. Great idea!
    Whimsy Workshop Teaching

  8. I found my project for the weekend! :) Thanks so much for sharing this awesome idea and posting that coupon!!

  9. How fun Denise! Those story stones are so cute. I wish we had a Joanne's in Hawaii! I may have to check them out online. AND I LOVE YOUR NEW DESIGN!! It is so amazing!

    Surfin' Through Second


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