Patient Referral

Photo Coasters: Activities for Dementia Patients

photo coasters dementia craft

As we approach Thanksgiving, it can be an emotionally charged time for those caring for a loved one with Alzheimer’s or other dementia. While families cherish their time together, they can see precious moments and memories slipping away.

Planning activities for a loved one with Alzheimer’s is a wonderful way to connect with them. As you work on the craft, share stories from your favorite holidays and ask them to share memories of holidays when they were young.

A craft like this easy photo coaster project is a lovely way to reminisce together. You can select copies of old family photos and share your memories. It can even be given as a gift from your loved one to other family members this holiday season and used for future holidays together.

Photo Coaster Craft

What You’ll Need: 

  • 4” x 4” ceramic tiles (available at craft stores)
  • Modge Podge
  • 4” x 4” color photos printed on regular copy paper
  • School scissors
  • Foam brush


  1. Trim your photos to a 4” square.
  2. Add a thin layer of modge podge to your tile.
  3. Lay the paper photo down on the tile and smooth it out flat.
  4. Let the tile dry for 15-20 minutes.
  5. Apply a top coat of Modge Podge to the photo.
  6. Let the tile dry again for 15-20 minutes.
  7. Apply one final coat of Modge Podge.
  8. Let the tile dry.

See more activities for dementia patients.

 Caregiver Tips

  1. If you make multiple tiles at one time, the earlier tiles will be dry by the time you finish each coat on all the remaining tiles.
  2. If there is any tackiness to the tile the next day, you can use a brush and apply Minwax Polycrylic to set the tile. It takes 3-4 hours to dry.
  3. While doing activities with a loved one with dementia, engage them in conversation. Play music they enjoy softly in the background to create a positive mood.
  4. Even though your loved one may not remember names or things that happened in recent days, they may still remember their childhood. Ask about favorite colors or clothing they used to wear.
  5. Activities for people with dementia have the best chance of success early in the day when your loved one is well rested. If they don’t want to participate or get frustrated, don’t force it. Try again another time.
  6. Remember that the goal is to have an engaging activity with your loved one with dementia. Don’t worry about the end result.


Crossroads Hospice & Palliative Care is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year to support patients with dementia and their families. Please call us at 1-888-564-3405 to learn more about how our unique care programs help provide a higher quality of life for dementia patients while helping caregivers avoid burnout.


If you found this information helpful, please share it with your network and community.
Copyright © 2021 Crossroads Hospice & Palliative Care. All rights reserved. 

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