Who are we and how did we start?
Crayon Rocks were developed by Barbara Lee, a special needs teacher who worked with elementary aged children for 23 years. She invented Crayon Rocks after being inspired by occupational therapist Jan Olsen and her Handwriting Without Tears program. She learned from Mrs. Olsen how important it was for children to develop a strong tripod grip early in their education process — handwriting skills depend upon this. Seeing that a simple tool to develop these skills in young children wasn't readily available, Ms. Lee set out to develop one.
How do Crayon Rocks help kids?
Since a child's first writing tool is usually a crayon, that crayon should be one that encourages him or her to use thumb, first and second fingers in a tripod grip. This is what makes Crayon Rocks a wonderful tool for fine motor development. Because of their shape, they do not allow kids to easily grip them in a closed fist which deters fine motor development and are also more resistant to breaking.
Children with cerebral palsy, autism, developmental delays and various forms of learning disabilities have tested Crayon Rocks in the classroom. Parents and teachers of special needs students often tell me how much their children love them.
What are they made of?
Unlike most crayons which are made of petroleum paraffin wax, Crayon Rocks are made from U.S.–grown and processed Kosher soy wax. We combine this wax with natural mineral pigments to create beautiful colours and a natural ground rock that gives the crayons their body. This creates a crayon that goes on smooth and blends easily.
Absolutely NO NASTIES.
Where are they made?
We first made Crayon Rocks in a garage in La Crescenta, California, mixing the colours in small batches and forming them in hand-made molds. Since then we've upgraded our digs a bit...to a barn — a wonderful structure raised by our Amish neighbours here on a hilltop in Hestand, Kentucky. Our manufacturing has been upgraded a bit and our procedures are more refined, but our simple surroundings suit us well.
How are they used?
Our crayons make it easy to apply great swaths of colour to the paper along with being able to create line work and smaller details. The colours blend together easily and allow kids to develop an endless array of new shades and combinations. They give rich colour that goes on smoothly and easily helps little fingers to grow strong as they spill their creative ideas onto paper.
We recommend brushing your finished creation with the palm of your hand for a finished oil pastel quality.
Are Crayon Rocks safe for kids?
We are committed to offering a safe and eco-friendly product. Crayon Rocks are non–toxic. They are, however, small enough (1.5 inch x .75 inch x .75 inch) to be a potential choking hazard to very young children. Made from a renewable resource, soy oil, they are an environmentally better choice over traditional petroleum wax crayons.