Friday, June 26, 2009
How to Make Sand Candles
Well it was the second last day of school today and in Kindergarten we had "Beach Day".
I know you're thinking....."they have to go back on Monday!"....well that's the schedule this year..go figure.
We made sand candles as our Beach Day craft. The kids had a blast and they were very easy to do.
paraffin wax (1 box will make around 6 candles)
old coffee cans or metal pot
electric frying pan
disposable plastic bowls (optional)
The first thing you want to do is get your wax melted. Put 2-3 inches of water into your electric frying pan. I found some old ones at a garage sale for about $3.00..I use them only to melt wax and that way I don't care if they get all scratched up.
Put your wax chunks into a metal coffee can or old pot. If you are using an old coffee can squeeze one end to form a spout...this helps when pouring out the melted wax. Place into the water and turn it on low. You don't want to melt your wax on high heat as it is a combustible...I try to keep the water just below boiling. Keep extra water nearby in case you need to add some....the water evaporates as you are melting. If you want to color your wax take some crayons in the desired color....remove wrapper and add to melting wax. You don't need much about 1/2 a crayon or so. Stir your wax every so often to get it all melted. Here I'm using pencils as my stir sticks. NEVER LEAVE MELTING WAX UNATTENDED.
Because I had 37 students and I wanted a candle they could easily take home I used some plastic bowls. If you are at the beach or have time you can do this in a pail or directly on the beachfront.
Add some water to your sand...you want it sticky. Place a handful into the bowl and mold it into a bowl or cup shape. You want some depth to it so you have room for your wax.
Add shells to the bottom and sides and press into the wet sand a bit.
Add a wick....here we used wicks that had a metal disk on the bottom. They were pre waxed so they stood up....it was more cost efficient with 37 to buy them this way.
You can make your own by tying wicking to a metal washer and then dip the wick into the melted wax to stiffen it.
Carefully pour your melted wax into your mold. With young kids this should be done by an adult.
Place the candle aside to harden and don't disturb it. We had ours outside and they took about 45 minutes to harden up.
Gently remove candle from mold and brush off the excess sand.
Trim the wick if needed.
There you have it. A great summer project to try. If you have excess wax you can keep it in the can and melt it again for another candle project.
As they candles melt down you might want to make a foil bowl to set them in to protect your table.
That's it for now. The mini garden post is still coming. I am planting the gardens this weekend and will take lots of pictures.
see you then