Family nature-play movement rocks the Pilbara
The Pilbara’s wealth has come from its rocks, so it comes as no surprise the latest nature play craze has gained a foothold in the region.
WA Rocks was founded by Alana Stevenson to encourage children to be more involved in nature play, exploration, creativity, art and fun.
The idea is for families to paint rocks and hide them in parks and other public places around town, then put a message on the WA Rocks Facebook page to say where they have left them. Once people find a rock, they can either keep it or hide it again.
Families have been participating in the movement from Exmouth to Port Hedland to Newman, and everywhere in between.
Baynton West mother Kresta Scott said the craze was a welcome change from the screen time that had become prevalent in recent years.
“We found a painted rock down in Exmouth and my son said ‘can we take that home and hide it in the park across the road?’,” she said. “He had heard about this from school and knew straight away what it was when he saw the rock.
“We much prefer the children being outside playing in the fresh air and jumping on board something that is free and easy to get involved in.”
Newman mother Jenny Elder-Green said the WA Rocks craze was helping children have fun and build skills.
“It is really helping them know what is in their community... and making them think outside the box,” she said.
“You get all these kids out there running around trying to find painted rocks, getting exercise, not sitting there on technology, and it is not costing parents anything.
“Nowadays you get so many kids who are shy and insular, this helps to really show what they can do.”
She encouraged parents to be involved in painting rocks as well to help build relationships with their children.
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