Miss Calee donated a rock tumbler to Tinker Hollow. It was interesting to watch the children gravitate to this super cool tumbling machine.

rock cleaner at daycare

The instructions were super easy to read and you can order replacement polishing powder on line.

rock book at daycare

Together we looked at some of the stones that were already ‘tumbled’ and shiny.  Following the directions in the guide, we chose some rough stones and placed them into the ‘rock tumbler’ along with some coarse sand.  We added some vegetable oil to the rim to make it easier for the lid to come off.  Of course, the children loved turning the tumbling machine ‘on’ and ‘off’.


After the rocks had tumbled for about 30 minutes, we rinsed them and then put them back into the tumbler with ‘polishing sand’.

young girls polishing rocks at child care camp

The children could hardly wait to see the finished product. The anticipation was half the fun!

rock book 2 at child care
rock book 1 at child care

While we waited for the tumbler to finish shining the rocks, we read about different types of stones.  The kit came with accessories to make jewelry too.

girls tumbling rocks at daycare

Once they realized how to use the tumbler, they were quite proud to tumble the stones all by themselves.

boys tumbling rocks at daycare

Collecting stones and sorting them is great fun. Finding interesting ways to classify the stones and arrange them allows children to use both their imaginations and classification skills.

girls doing rock art at child care center

Bringing the newly tumbled stones over to our ‘brick and pebble design station’ allowed for an extension of their play. The more time the children have to arrange and rearrange the stones, the more creative and innovative they become.

u rock art at child care center

Happy Summer!