Inspired by Melismama at The Joys of Home Education, we recycled our old crayons into beautiful, festive, valentine-y "Rainbow Heart Crayons!" My 4-year old named them. She loves rainbows and hearts and art, so these were triply exciting! As an added bonus, they were simple enough for my 1-, 2-, and 3-year old kiddos to participate in!
Here's the quick how-to:
1- Prepare the molds. Melismama used silicone hearts, but I don't have hearts. I pinched some aluminum foil inside my round silicons, and used that. Be careful not to tear your foil--the one I tore had wax melt on the outside of the foil. It made pulling the new crayon out tricky.
2- Peel the paper off the broken crayons and drop 7-9 crayon bits in each mold. Talk about recycling and melting during this process. We recently experimented with ice and water, so this was a fun connection to make. Many things melt! (An unexpected side effect, though, is that lately when the 3-year old gets tired he says, "I'm melting!")
3- Put the crayons in a 250 degree oven for about 9 minutes. Our oven tends to cook fast, so you can always cook longer or check sooner. You want the crayons to be melted. Ours actually turned as runny as water, but then I had to be very careful as I lifted it out of the oven so the colors didn't all swim together.
4- Let them cool and remove the aluminum foil! This is easiest when they will hold their shape, but are not completely cold. However, even completely cold works, and then you have a fabulous new Rainbow Heart Crayon! It took about 30 minutes to cool completely. The kids were thrilled!