At the end of every school year, my kids come home with backpacks, bags and pencil boxes stuffed with school supplies: broken pencils, stubby crayons, a million little scraps of paper. I'm never quite sure what to do with it all. Much of it is still useable, and even though I know I'll send the kids back to school with brand new pencils and boxes of crayons next year, I hate to let the old stuff go to waste.
The kids and I sat together and brainstormed, and with a little help from Google, we came up with some fun crafts to try this summer using their old school supplies.
Melted Crayon Shapes
This is easy enough for your preschoolers to do, but interesting enough for older kids, too. Peel the paper off those old crayons and break them into small pieces. (Tip: Soak the crayons in water to make the paper labels easier to remove.)
Place the pieces directly inside a non-stick muffin tin or candy mold. Fill each space about halfway. Bake them in the oven at 350 degrees for about 3-6 minutes. Watch them closely, and as soon as the crayons have melted completely, remove the tray from the oven and let it cool in the freezer. Your crayon hearts or circles should pop right out after about 10 minutes.
You can melt similar colors together to make recycled crayons, or mix them up to create colorful little gifts for your kids to give their friends. Use specialty candy molds to make different shapes to give to friends around holidays (hearts for Valentine's Day, pumpkins for Halloween, etc.).