Monday, February 9, 2015

Making Crayons - A Fun Experiment for Valentine's Day

I've seen tons of pins on Pinterest about melting crayons and it always seemed like fun. I always wanted to try them, so when I found these cute little silicone heart at WalMart I just had to have them.

The first step in using your oven to melt crayons is to use a silicone tray. They're easy to maneuver, the crayons don't stick to the tray, and you can pop them right out once they cool down.

Next, you need to peel crayons, break them up and mix colors up to create tye-dyed shape crayons.

I had my students help with this part since they were the ones who would be using the crayons. They each got to fill up 4 little hearts. We used a mixture of Crayola crayons and RoseArt crayons. I wasn't sure which would melt better, but crayons are crayons.

To get them home, I put them in a baggie very carefully. I didn't quite take into consideration the drive home and that maybe someone would slam on his breaks in front of me, which would cause my bag to fly to the floor, and this would happen...
Yeah, that happened. So I had to take a few minutes to set the crayons back up.
Once I had the crayons back inside the tray, I put the trays onto one of my cookie sheets. I didn't want to risk the chance of the crayons melting over the sides and melting to the bottom of the stove.
I set the oven to 350 degrees. I figured that was the average temperature you use to cook something.
I stood by the oven to make sure I didn't over-melt the crayons. The above picture was after 4-5 minutes. It didn't take long at all!
And I didn't really think it would have a strong smell, but it did. It wasn't an awful smell though. The best way to describe it is, do you remember those machines (kind of like the Easy Bake Oven, but for boys), where they could melt this plastic/silicone stuff into a mold and create stretchy insects? My brother had one growing up and we loved it! Anyway, I don't remember what it was called, but the smell reminded me of that machine.
After the crayons finished melting, I took them out of the oven to cool. The cooling process took longer than the melting process.
But once they are finished cooling, you just pop them right out of the silicone tray!

Some of our crayons had this layer of melted crayon on top that didn't really mix with the other crayon. I think that's the difference in crayon wax. Next time we will stick to one brand of crayon.

Check back after Valentine's Day to see how we will be using these crayons to create our parent gift!

What do you have planned for your class for Valentine's Day?

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