The crayon craft we did today started as a research project. I was looking for a way to recycle or reuse a very old muffin tin. Not only did I find a craft for reusing my worn tray, I was able to make use of our collection of broken crayons. My kids enjoyed the fun and learned that it was an earth friendly activity, each in their own age appropriate way.
How to Make Crayon Doodlers (Recommended for Age 3+)
- Peel the paper off of old broken crayons (This may sound tedious but I found it to be a great stress reliever!)
- Preheat oven to 300
- Help your children separate the broken crayons into fun colour combos in muffin trays
- Turn heat off and place muffin tin in the oven
- Bake for about ten minutes (or until liquid forms)
- Place tray in the freezer for about half an hour
- Take out of freezer until doodlers reach room temperature
- Flip tin over and bang out doodlers (onto a soft surface such as your hand or lap-not a counter)
- Get colouring!
But, you may need to experiment a little. . .
In my first attempt to make crayon doodlers I used instructions that left out the freezer part and suggested lining the muffin tray with tinfoil. This didn’t really work, because some of the wax got out and coated the bottom. Instead of throwing out the muffin tin, I will reuse it next time. A sturdy multicoloured muffin crayon such as this would have been great for doodling in the car.
The tinfoil failure was my daughter’s favourite part, though, because we reused it to make silver rings for her treasure box (where she keeps all things chokable away from her brother). Speaking of chokable, these homemade crayon doodlers are not safe for toddlers. They crack quite easily and pieces can break off. I learned the hard way because my son thought they were frisbees and flew a few through the air. For stronger crayons, fill the tins to at least half. Some moms complain that the colours all run together, but I found that if you remove the tray as gently as possible (or try using contrasting colour combos such as bright green and red) they work fine.
“When I was a kid, my mom and I would ‘grate’ the broken crayons. We would then place a pretty leaf on a sheet of wax paper, sprinkle our ‘rainbow’ of shaved crayons all over it, place the 2nd sheet on top, then take a warm iron and iron the wax paper sheets together. The crayons made a colorful background for the leaf placed between the sheets of waxpaper.”
By the way, the crayon paper I peeled off would have made great confetti for the homemade pinata we made for my husband’s birthday, which was filled with birthday messages from friends and family. I’ll save the colourful paper for our next fridge collage! What else could be done with these papers?
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[This post was written by Tara Benwell.]