When thinking about S's valentines this year, I wanted to find something non-candy, and preferably something that we could make together. I found several heart crayon valentines on Pinterest and they sounded perfect (I believe the idea originated here at Chef Messy, but I'm not sure)! Unfortunately for us, S does not have many crayons that are broken/without paper, so I needed to buy some new sets. Because these valentines were going to be for preschoolers, I wanted to make sure the crayons were big and thick - easy for little hands to draw with! This meant A LOT of crayons... We first decided to dump them all out and sort them into color piles. This was a good opportunity to discuss color "shades".
There were definitely too many crayons that needed to be peeled, so I did the majority of that work because it was HARD. Weirdly, certain shades/colors were doused with glue and took forever to peel (mostly the yellows and blues), while others peeled easily with just a tear or two. S had fun helping me break the crayons into pieces (we tried out all sorts of methods - breaking by hand, breaking by stomping with feet, and we even brought out a small hammer and cookie tray for her to practice hammering them to pieces). Again, because of the vastness of the work, I did need to help quite a bit with breaking.
A batch ready for the oven! In all, we needed to make SIX batches to make the valentines for everyone on her list. From what I've read, it's important to use a silicone mold (this certainly made it easy for us to remove the crayons once they'd cooled). I found this one at Michaels.
S had fun stacking the crayons as they came out. Interestingly each one is totally unique.
Another shot of the finished products. They are so beautiful!
The aftermath in our living room...hahaha.
S is just learning how to write, and writing each valentine would be far too much work, so I had her make two on one page and copied them onto cardstock paper with a Xerox. She'd drawn the hearts and colored them in herself once the copied valentines came home.
Of course you can choose whatever shaped silicone mold you want and make crayons for any occasion (or just for yourself for fun!). You'll need to peel and break the crayons to put them in a mold - the more you spread out the colors, the more quickly the finished crayon changes color as you write. We cooked these in our oven at 250 degrees F for 15 minutes. You'll need to do less or more time depending on the thickness of your mold (ours were pretty thick). I am also happy to report that subsequent meals did not taste like crayon, though while these were cooking there was a faint gross smell of melty crayon, so I just ran the oven fan while they were cooking and for about 20 minutes afterwards and that seemed to take care of it.
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All activities here are activities I feel are safe for my own children. As your child's parents/guardians, you will need to decide what you feel is safe for your family. I always encourage contacting your child's pediatrician for guidance if you are not sure about the safety/age appropriateness of an activity. All activities on this blog are intended to be performed with adult supervision. Appropriate and reasonable caution should be used when activities call for the use of materials that could potentially be harmful, such as scissors, or items that could present a choking risk (small items), or a drowning risk (water activities), and with introducing a new food/ingredient to a child (allergies). Observe caution and safety at all times. The author and blog disclaim liability for any damage, mishap, or injury that may occur from engaging in any of these activities on this blog.