Recycling Your Old Crayons

Have you finished getting all of your school supplies? We bought the final 2″ binder and the eight boxes of 210 count tissues yesterday. WE ARE DONE.

And, thanks to this amazing organizational (and may I add recessive) gene that Maddie inherited from some long lost relative, each child has a nice stack of his or her supplies on the dining room table.

school supplies ready

Everything is nice, new and ready for a year of creativity and learning and discovery.

Yet, there is a dark secret hiding in my linen/supply/wrapping paper closet (doesn’t everyone have one of those closets?). Bags of old crayons. (Were you hoping for a steamier, juicier secret in that linen closet?)

Old crayons

My friend, Heather, who hired an organizer this summer to help get ready for a move, threw her bags of crayons out on advice of the organizer, “Kids don’t use broken, used crayons. Get rid of them.” I totally understand why she had those bags of crayons.

I would also clear my crayon clutter except. . .I just can’t. It seems like such a waste. And with four kids times now going into our fourth year of school that is a lot of crayons that I’m dumping. I can’t do it. There must be some way to reuse these!

Now, I know you have way more pressing issues than old crayons, but. . .

Did you know that each year over 92,000(!) pounds of crayons go into landfills.  That’s a lot of wax–and oil–that we are dumping into our landfils.

Did you know that there are RECYCLING PROGRAMS for old crayons.

Here is one where all you have to do is ship the crayons to them. Yes, you have to pay for shipping but at least the guilt is assuaged. (What?! you don’t have guilt about dumping old crayons?!) The best part of this recycle program is that you don’t have to peel the crayons!

Honestly, I think I’ve found my “community project” for our Brownie Troop for the end of the year! In a school with over 500 students, there are  a lot of crayons that get tossed when all of those supplies come home!

And, so you ask, what do people do with recycled crayons?

Look at these adorable recycled crayon stars from Amazon. Can you say STOCKING STUFFER?

Or you could recycle your own as a project with the kids. (To easily get the paper off the crayon, soak them in water first.)

This would make the cutest birthday give aways!

I also read how you can make firestarters with newspaper and old crayons. If, and when, it ever cools down in south Texas I’m sure that these would come in handy.

Here is an idea I’m definitely going to try, it involves upcycling crayons into beautiful canvases–and the hotter the weather the better!

So, there you have it! Go ahead and buy new crayons for your kids–guilt-free!






I am a mother of two sets of twins and a singleton. I explore the wild world of multiples and provide resources for other parents of multiples.
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