Painted Pocket Pebbles!
Make a collection of painted pebbles! Choose one each day and put it in your pocket to remind yourself of your personal strengths and qualities!
What you’ll need: Small attractive pebbles or stones collected from outside, Sharpie pens (or other types of permanent markers preferably with a fine tip), paint and varnish (optional), a small attractive bag to keep the pebbles in when you’re finished.
What’s it for?
This activity helps you to recognise your personal strengths and qualities. It’s sometimes difficult to keep these in mind when faced with the challenges of everyday life. By keeping a painted pocket pebble with you, it will serve as a reminder throughout the day.
Notice how you’re feeling right now. Close your eyes and notice what’s going on inside your mind and body.
How are you feeling?
What are you thinking?
How does your body feel?
First of all collect some attractive pebbles from outside. You can often find some nice ones on the beach, if you live near the seaside, or in a local park. Make sure that they’re small enough to be comfortable to carry around, and smooth enough so they don’t scratch you!
Wash and dry the stones carefully.
Make a list of your personal strengths and qualities - things that make you unique, great, and special. For example, you might be loving, kind, strong, loyal, trusting, hard-working, friendly, funny, etc.
Find a pebble that somehow matches the strength or quality. This might be because it is a certain shape or colour. If you want to, you can paint the pebble but make sure you let it dry before doing the next stage.
With your Sharpie or permanent marker, write the strength or quality on the pebble. You might want to put some little designs or patterns around the word - but if your pebble is already pretty, you might not want to.
When you’ve written one strength or quality on each of the pebbles, let the ink dry. If you want to use varnish to make the pebbles shiny and the writing more durable, do this now and let them dry.
Find a nice small bag where you can keep your painted pocket pebbles.
Before you leave home, choose a pebble to take with you. For example, if you feel like you’re going to need to be brave during the day, take a pebble which says ‘brave’ or ‘courage’ or ‘strength’. Put this in your pocket and whenever you feel it there, you’ll be reminded of your personal strength or quality.
Extra Activity: Make a set of painted pocket pebbles for a friend or family member as a gift so that they can also use them when they need to be reminded of their own special strengths and qualities.
When you’ve finished, spend a moment reflecting on the activity and ask yourself the following questions:
Was it easy or difficult to match a pebble with a strength or quality?
Did you learn anything new about yourself while you did this activity?
How did it feel to explore your strengths and qualities?
Which strength or quality do you think it would be useful for you to remember more often?
This exercise helps you to recognise your own strengths and qualities and how you might remember and draw on them during the day.
Take a moment to notice how you are feeling at the end of this activity. Did you discover anything surprising? What can you take away to make you feel better about yourself from this activity?
If you would like to, share something about your experience with this activity with someone you live with! Ask the person who looks after you to send us an email if you have any questions or comments about the activity, or would like to send us any pictures (firstname.lastname@example.org). Don't forget to subscribe for more fun CAT activities!
Created by Ian Grundy © April 2021
Creative Arts Used: Art
Psychological Areas Explored: Emotional Wellbeing, Emotional Literacy, Self Exploration
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These activities could be done by children of all ages, but some may need the support of their parent or carer to read the instructions or complete the activity safely.
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