Saturday, February 11, 2012

Recycling Crayons

Today, I worked on melting the crayon ends the class worked so hard to unwrap on Friday. I actually found this idea from another teaching blog through pinterest. I love pinterest-it's a website that has boards where you can pin a variety of things and have them categorized. So far it's an invite-only-to use, but if you would like an invite to try out this website-it's totally free, just let me know and I will email you an invite!
First, preheat the oven to 275 degrees, I found that this temperature works best (at least with my oven). Second, generously spray vegetable or canola oil over the molds/muffin tin. I used both valentine heart molds and a regular muffin tin. The valentine heart mold is rubber and the crayons inside took a big longer to melt.
I also sorted out the crayon ends by color to ensure even distribution of colors in each mold. Place crayon ends up to half way in the mold or 75% in the muffin tin.
crayon ends sorted by color
Crayon ends in the heart mold
I put them in the oven for about 10-15 minutes. I also took a toothpick to swirl the colors around for an interesting effect.
I use the toothpick to swirl the colors around
When the melted crayons come out of the oven, it is still liquid-so they need to rest. I let them rest for at least an hour. Some sites say this process can be quickened by placing them in the refrigerator/freezer.

After resting, the melted wax will harden and will be ready to be removed. I pulled them out of the molds (the muffin tins required a sharp object to help with removal) and wiped the oil off the crayons.
The recycled crayons from the muffin tin
The new crayons created from the muffin tin will be placed in our art center for students to use! The heart ones will be given to each child to take home as a valentine's day favor!
If you have lots of crayon ends at home, you can do this simple activity with your child! It's easy and kids can help out throughout the process.
The completed heart crayons