Melting Crayons with Preschoolers (States of Matter)

Autumn is one of my favorite times of the year. I wanted to stick with a fall theme and include pumpkins in our experiments.  Next week, we will explore what is inside them maybe do a little carving, but this week, I wanted to something different.  I have seen so many melting crayon ideas around and decided to combine science with art.

First I introduced what a solid is and told them that a crayon is an example of one. I compared it to water and we discussed how the crayon stays the same shape and water takes on the shape of its container.  We also discussed ice and how ice is a solid until it melts and then becomes water.  The kids easily grasped this concept and connected it to popsicles, ice cream, and other melting objects.

The materials needed:

  • crayons (thinner works better), peeled
  • glue gun
  • hair dryer
  • protection for your work surface
  • pumpkins (we used small white ones that I found at the Farmer’s Market, they were perfect!)
We started by covering the table with construction paper, which did end up holding up to the heat.  Then I told the kids that they could choose the color crayons that they wanted and peel and break them (they loved this part).

We started by covering the table with construction paper, which did end up holding up to the heat. Then I told the kids that they could choose the color crayons that they wanted and peel and break them (they loved this part).

When the crayons were ready, I used very little glue to keep the crayons in place.

When the crayons were ready, I used very little glue to keep the crayons in place.

Then we added heat with the hair dyer and the magic began!  This experiment was AWESOME!  We watched the solid turn into a liquid, than cool and change back into a solid.

Then we added heat with the hair dyer and the magic began! This experiment was AWESOME! We watched the solid turn into a liquid, than cool and change back into a solid.

Another before picture

Another before picture

AFTER!

After!

One more before!  By the way, another bonus was watching the different colors mix and change into different colors.

One more before! By the way, another bonus was watching the different colors mix and change into different colors.

After!  They turned out so beautifully!

After! They turned out so beautifully!

This was a great experiment!  When I do the project again (and I will for sure!)  I would have the crayons peeled ahead of time.  The kids loved the project and loved showing off their pumpkins to anyone and everyone!  It was also an engaging activity that taught an important science concept! Win-win!

Enjoy!

~Miss Jenny

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