my 5 yr old is obsessed with rocks is this normal?

Charleen - posted on 11/14/2011 ( 12 moms have responded )

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My 5 yr old ever since she was little has collected rocks she picks them up puts them in her pockets and she lines them up. Then when you take them away from her she screams and gets very angry and sometimes violent she always says they are special to her. I do not know why this is. If anyone knows please let me know because I just found a handful of tiny rocks in my washer and it is getting worse.

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Jenn - posted on 11/18/2011

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This is totally normal. It is normal and healthy for small children to become "obsessed" with certain things and to collect them. They take a lot of pride in the "collections" although they may seem strange to you it is important that you respect it and you encourage it. They are exploring their world around them and it is important that you nurture this. Why not help her begin a rock collection. My son is five and he collects rocks, i actually just bought him three "collectors" rocks from the Bay of Fundy today!! It is very healthy for children to go through these phases it is a normal part of child development and it should reassure you that your child is right on track! Of course she will freak out if you take them, how would you feel if someone tried to take your coin collection or stamps collection or whatever it is you collect? They are important and special to her. Please nurture her and help her with her collection. If you are worried she may choke or eat them the designate a special container for her collection and only allow her to play with or look at them in your presence. This can provide a great way to bond with your child. Spend a few hours taking a nature rock and collecting different types of rocks. It can also be a teaching tool. Have her sort the rocks into catgories: Round ones, flat ones, rough ones, smooth ones, black ones, etc. Have her line them up smallest to biggest. Ask her how many rocks there are if you add two to a pile of three? Or take away two? Clearly rocks have piqued her interest so use it to your advantage! Don't worry to much about finding rocks in the washing machine though because before you know she will have moved on to a new "collection" and rocks will be old news. Could be worse! My son collected bugs for a while!! Kept sneaking them in the house. I tore my house apart one night because a cricket was making its noise in my house all night. Not sure if it escaped or died but it finally stopped. After that we had to frisk him before we let him in! Please let your daughter enjoy the joys of childhood collecting and join her in the fun:) You have a very smart little girl and you should be very proud:)

Jenni - posted on 11/15/2011

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Around 7ish? I started collecting rocks. Mostly because I'm a huge nerd. lol kidding. But I became really fascinated by all the different types. My parents encouraged my collecting by buying me a Scientific Guide to Rocks and Minerals, they'd also buy me minerals, fossils, rocks from Science stores, they got me a tackle box to collect them in and label them, bought me a rock tumbler (to polish my findings) and took me on a field trip to Rock Glenn (a fossil site). One of my friends got into collecting rocks too and we use to "trade" them like baseball cards. So, turn it into a learning experience?



I think it's pretty normal behaviour for children around that age to start collecting items. I started a sticker collection at around 6 years old. Among many other things... teacup animal cards, baseball cards, buttons, My Little Ponies.



I still like collecting rocks on the beach and use them in my garden. :) But I'm no longer "obsessed" and haven't been since I was 10.

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My son at 4yrs old started bringing rocks home from the park, and he still does he's 9yrs old now.....He cleans them with water and soap he has a display of rocks in his room on his dresser and he remebers were every rock came from!! So no i don't think its wierd its just one of those adorable things children do!!! lol.......But my son dosen't throw any fits when i tell him not to bring anymore rocks home!!!

Charleen - posted on 11/21/2011

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Well now it doesnt make her seem obsessed which is what I was worried about. I think it bothers me because I used to hold onto everything before we moved now I am in a clean place that I want to stay picked up I know it wont be perfect with 2 kids but I really do not want a messy place after years of never getting rid of anything but trash I just dont want the mess and I dont want the kids to grow up in a mess either. but I had a talk with her and we are limiting it to big rocks only.

Jenni - posted on 11/19/2011

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Raynesha reminds me. You could find rocks that you could make into animals. With paint, felt, googly eyes. We did this when we were camping with the Park's Children's program. It was a lot of fun. We made turtles and frogs. Pet Rocks. :))

[deleted account]

When i was young, i collected rocks as well. I used to try to find big ones that were similar to shells. The reason i did it was because i found them interesting, i used to give them baths and sort them out according to sizes and colors. I wanted to get some paint, so i could make them pretty. I figured i could then go door to door and sell them to people! I was about 7 or 8 though, haha :)

Marta - posted on 11/18/2011

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My lil girl does the same thing and even gives them names. I think is compeltly normal.

Angela - posted on 11/18/2011

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My daughter does the same thing! She comes home with all these tiny pebbles, they are all o er my place.. She calls them her little treasures..lol they end up everywhere though I step on them all the time and wash them in the laundry.. Good to know Aly isn't the only little one who just loves rocks lol!

September - posted on 11/15/2011

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It just sounds like something she enjoys doing why would that be of concern? Make sure you check her pockets before you put her clothes in the wash. I collect heart rocks whenever I go somewhere special, I have a ton of them.

Aimee - posted on 11/15/2011

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just somethin hes goin through 1 of mine usto collect string and we found them every were but they grow out of it its just a comfort thing hope this helps

Firebird - posted on 11/14/2011

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My daughter has had a rock collection for the last 2 years. She's 6 now. I always make sure ot empty her pockets before I do laundry, I have so many 'washed' rocks here, it's not even funny. lol

Medic - posted on 11/14/2011

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My five year old always has rocks in his pockets when he comes home from school. Usually I just check his pockets before I wash, and granted he doesn't flip out when I tell him to put them back outside. Maybe he knows I will win the argument anyways.

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