I brought them home and settled into a comfy position so I could use a craft knife to peel the paper off of most of the crayons. Leaving peach, brown and black out of the mix, I only needed one band-aid after the wrapper-slicing adventure. Murphy's Law being what it is, I found tips on soaking paper-wrapped crayons in water to make removal easy AND safe after I had finished. I also made a mental note that ~this~ year I'd be sure to have my Super Stars peel the crayons themselves: let's hear it for fine motor development! After chopping the crayons up into 1/4 inch pieces, I waited for my oven to preheat to 275 degrees as I loaded up my oven safe (check those labels!) silicone baking pan:
I did *not* use any vegetable spray on the pan, but I did set it on top of a cookie sheet for stability. If you don't have a sheet devoted to non-food craft use, cover your pan with aluminum foil to protect its surface from spills or sloshes.
It takes twelve minutes in my oven to get the crayons softened in the center and melted around the edges, but watch yours carefully so you can adjust the time as needed. You don't want the crayons to melt completely. Using a toothpick, gently push the semi-solid pieces down so that the completely melted crayon soup covers them, but don't stir or swirl: you'll lose the color.
As I only have one star shaped mold to use, I put both it and the baking sheet in the fridge for fifteen minutes, and then pop the crayons out before starting the next batch.
I'm not sure if I'll mount these on cards to give as gifts to my newest Stars this August, or if I'll keep them in a tub for one of our first art projects and/or rainbow activities, but they're bound to be a hit!
(A gallon size plastic bag of crayon pieces made over thirty chunky crayons.)
More melted crayon inspiration can be found at:
~ The Popsicle Blog: Homemade Earth Crayons
~ EmmmyLizzzy: DIY Crayon Valentines (with a great tip about using water to soak off crayon wrappers!)
~ Feathers and Sunshine: Candy Crayons?