Recycle Everything, Even Broken Crayons

Take it a step beyond having extras around in case someone forgets or loses theirs or you somehow pick up an extra student. If a kid runs out of blue, you just give them another. But when the tub of brokens gets too large to be practical, it’s time to get creative…

Place waxed muffin cups or aluminum in a muffin pan and fill each about half full with broken crayons. For a multi-colored block, try to use two of each color you place in a tin. Putting two blue close to two red keeps the finished product from being too colorful and turning muddy. Try sorting crayons into piles (a good assignment for a few students with some free time) and then combining similar colors in one cup. The result is can be one fat green crayon comprised of many different shades. You can also mix similar colors in a baggie and pound them into small bits with a hammer or rolling pin. Layer colors into the muffin cup to create an even rainbow effect. When you’re ready to melt them, place the muffin pan in a warm oven (250-350F) and WATCH THEM CLOSELY. Just like leaving them on the dash in the car in the summer, it doesn’t take a very high temperature or very much time for them to melt.

Shred the crayons using a crayon sharpener or grater. Sprinkle the shavings over waxed paper. Place another piece of waxed paper on top. Using a warm iron, press the waxed paper until the crayon has melted. Cut out patterns on black paper to make a stained glass window. Put the waxed paper behand the black paper and you have a stained glass window. This is one of those things you want to experiment at home with first before you try to do it with kids. -Don & Micki Archer

I have a large box that I keep for broken crayons. They are then available for art projects which would use up the kids’ ‘good’ ones quickly. They are also available for any project we might do using crayon shavings. ( We make a neat fall picture by placing fall leaves and crayon shavings between two pieces of waxed paper and ironing. Then we frame it in construction paper.) -Sally Engle

A good idea for recycling broken crayons is making those neat colored candles for special art projects and holidays, be it for Mother’s Day or Father’s Day or for Christmas, but you can send home a letter to the parents to bring in all their broken crayons for special projects and maybe keep a box by the front door just for that reason. When it fills up, empty it into a larger container. -“GAELLIC”

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