How to… make Story Cubes (& beautiful memories)
Hello! Today I bring you a little “How to” that is very close to my heart: Story Cubes!? Though you need to make these for your kids, they do make a lovely preschool craft to make FOR them…. Can I do a bit of rambling first and then tell you how to make them? Pretty please!
As you know I do weekly book reviews on books that we are currently reading and adore. Books are fabulous for bonding. Books are fabulous for cuddling. Books are fabulous for development (imagination, vocabulary etc etc). We love books. No doubt about it! Which is why I regularly bombard you with our book choice.!
A little bit about Story Telling
However, have you ever thought about the power of Story Telling? Storytelling has enormous benefits shared with reading, but I believe takes these to another level:
2) Bedtime wind down
3) Creative development
4) Learning the spoken word/ improved communication
5) Decision making skills & learning from mistakes
6) Reworking the day and feelings/ understanding your child better
7) Introducing family values and ideas
8- All of these have long term impact and even sets your child up with better “business skills” (believe it or not!)
Story telling is a two way process, bringing you closer together. Children are amazing natural storytellers and we have a wonderful opportunity to nurture this. Enough from me, I could write a whole essay!
Go visit Chris and her family at Thinly Spread and read her post “There is Nothing Better Than A Good Story” for more!
Story telling is hard when you are out of practice. So I made some story cubes that I saw somewhere on my blog hop travels to help me along the way (if you are said blog, please get in touch, so I can link up with you). They are so easy to use that I thought you may like to hear about them too. Basically, you “throw” them and then tell a story using all the images on the cubes. You can take turns developing the story, getting your child to say the next part of the story. You can make it harder by following a certain order. You can make it longer or shorter. You can rethrow your dice. Your choice! There are plenty of paper versions around, but I love these wooden cubes. They are tactile and they fit in a neat little bag and Red Ted loves playing with his! (you can of course make them out of paper and your kids can help colour things in and draw the images, but they won’t last “forever”. Here is a paper cube template. It does make for a nice rainy day activity “together”)
Materials: 6-8 25-30mm wooden cubes (available in craft stores like this one), Varnish, Paintbrush, Fine Marker Pen (approx. 0.7 nib), Acrylic Paint (optional if you want “colour” options).
1) Varnish the cube (this will stop the pen running into the grain) and let dry on a cookie rack. I touched up a couple of sides with a second coat, but strictly speaking one should do the trick!
2) Decide on some prompts: I found it useful to think of all the drawings first and to practice drawing a couple. Remember, it does not have to be an artwork your children will love whatever you draw. When I ran out of ideas (I did ours whilst my children were sleeping), I enrolled the help of my eldest for ideas of what to draw on the remaining cubes! It is useful to balance animals, with food/ drink, with colours (if you want to have some), with objects, with methods of transport – maybe have one of each per cube? Include some favourite things, for us this was a bunny and a train!
3) Draw your prompts!
I LOVE giving these as gifts and they have been very well received and well enjoyed! Contact me through the comments and I can send you a PDF with some drawing ideas (and why not subscribe to my blog as a “Thank You”?).