Posts Tagged With: reuse and recycle

A Child’s Art Inspiration: Make a Recycled Clay & Dried Flower Sculpture

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“All The Love In My Heart For Mom” ~ clay, dried flowers, feather & cardboard box sculpture, made by Captain when she was 3.

This is a sculpture that Captain made as a gift for me a couple of years ago.  She had been in the habit of picking flowers from a large Rose of Sharon bush and then drying them in baskets.  One day she decided to use a little white box to stuff all of the leftover bits of clay (the parts where all of the colors are mashed together) and, very privately, went to work. She stuffed the box with the clay very tightly and then carefully (yes, I do mean carefully!  Even though she was 3 she was very intent on her art projects!) placed the dried roses and pushed them in.  She was so proud to give it to me as a present, and I cherish it to this day!  It is gorgeous, and all of her own creation.  Originally, the sculpture didn’t have a feather in the top corner but she was bothered for a couple of months when she looked at it because she said that it was “not finished yet”.  She was pleased (and relieved) when she finally found what was missing and placed the feather in the top right corner.  I keep this sculpture on the mantel in our living room.

This sculpture is an awesome (we think!) use of all of the leftover bits of clay (do you have a baggie full?) dried flowers, or any other bits of found nature, feathers, beads, trinkets, well, just about anything that can be pressed into the clay.  She used a small 4 x 3″ white box, the kind that a little necklace would come in, but just finding a tiny box of any sort would work.  This is, afterall, a work of recycled art, and kids love that!

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There is a gentle old-fashionedness to this piece that strikes such love in my heart!

I recommend first explaining the project and having the clay on hand. Then have an art “treasure hunt”, whereby the child searches for a suitable box and goes outside to gather found bits of nature.  This is a Captain-recommended project for kids and we truly hope you will try it, just in time for April Earth Month.  I am going to post a photo of this sculpture in the k’ARTwheels art gallery, and if your child makes one, feel free to contact me to show their recycled clay sculpture in the gallery, if they like!

We would love to hear your thoughts, or how this project worked for your family.

Cheers!  Karen

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Categories: Art Rocks For Kids!, Homeschooling Projects | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Crayon Cupcakes!

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Recycled Crafts: One thing to do with all of those leftover bits of crayons!


We were looking for a way to recycle and reuse a jar of broken crayon pieces, and really wanted to melt them with an iron between sheets of wax paper to make “stained glass” crafts, but alas, I realized we were low on gas for the generator to power the cabin to run the iron, and at the same time realized that I don’t own an iron anyways! Aside from they joy I took in knowing that I never need to actually use an iron, we forwent that activity and looked around for something else to do with the crayons.

We decided to melt them down to make our own crayons!

Method

We removed all of the wrappers from the crayon bits. I put a muffin tin on the table and Captain put a paper cupcake liner in each hole. We used the small-sized liners and they worked great; next time we will try the full sized ones as well. Now for the fun part! Captain filled each of the cups with different combinations of the crayons, breaking them into even smaller pieces as needed. Fill the cups about 2/3 full. Place in a 250 degree oven for about 10 minutes and then check them often until they are “done”. The pieces should be soft but not completely melted. I didn’t know to keep the oven on low and our crayons completely melted but turned out really cute anyways. I looked online and found Dina Brook’s method on Education.com and also saw that another mom wrote in to say that she puts the crayons into silicone baking molds to make shapes like seahorses and hearts- fun!

After they cooled, Captain enjoyed peeling the wrappers from them and we put them on a dish to admire. The “cupcakes” are fun to color with and she was excited to save one for her Grandma and Auntie as they make a sweet recycled gift!

Good times, I love the age of 5!

Cheers, Karen

Categories: Art Rocks For Kids!, Homeschooling Projects | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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