Bring the Color in with Crayon Sun Catchers!

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We love crayons in our home and use them daily! We have been collecting our broken crayons for several months and we decided to use them for some fun STEAM projects at home. One of our recent projects was inspired by the book in my Reading STEMs Learning Series entitled, ‘The Crayon Man’.

We created these fun sun catchers with crayon shavings and wax paper!

What you need:

  • Crayons (preferably bright colors)
  • Hand Grater
  • Scrap paper or newspaper
  • Wax paper
  • Iron & Iron Board

What to do:

  1. Create crayon shavings with the hand grater. (I recommend that a parent or adult do this step because the grater can be sharp.)
  2. Sprinkle the crayon shavings onto the wax paper. Do not clump a lot of crayon shavings into one place. Be sure to spread them around so the colors don’t all mix together to form black. The more spread out the better!
  3. Place another piece of wax paper on top and cover both sides of wax paper with newspaper or scrap paper.
  4. Put you iron at the lowest temperature setting and lightly rub it over the newspaper with the wax paper that is in between.
  5. Remove your wax paper and observe the melting crayon colors. (You can hang them to a window as is, or glue them to paper frames.)

Where’s the science?

  • When heated, the wax in the crayons melt. The pigments stretch out, which then allows light to pass through the colors more easily.
  • When the sun hits the sun catcher at just the right angle, the light disperses the light in the rainbow of colors. You might see the rainbow of light in the area of the room where you place it!

A quick tip on cleaning your grater – use warm water and a dish brush to remove the crayon! Enjoy!


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