I was getting a 72 hour kit together for my daughter and ran across something about using crayons to burn.
Our interest was peeked!
Warning!!! This could be dangerous and involves a flame!
Do NOT do without proper adult supervision!!! As a precaution
have a fire extinguisher handy.
We did our own myth busters for science today!
We started off with a CraZArt crayon and it was hard to get it to burn and keep burning. The paper feels waxy.
We decided to try a Crayola crayon and see if it was any easier. Sure enough! The paper is less waxy.
We used a regular lighter to get the crayons to burn and then dad go involved and things got a little crazy! Thankfully mom (me) was there to supervise!
Steps *Under supervision only!
First we melted the top of the crayon onto a paper plate. This made the base “holder” for our “candle” to stand in.
In hindsight it would have been better to use something to put the experiment on that didn’t have the potential to burn!
Burning the CraZArt crayon
It was hard to get it going. The paper felt pretty waxy which may be the reason why.
When it did get going, it was exciting to see that this actually works!
You could see the wax bubbling as it slowly burned the paper. We were amazed by how slowly the paper burned.
The flame didn’t stay large and we wondered if a Crayola crayon would burn the same. So, we started a second crayon!
And out went the CraZArt crayon.
Things get more intense when dad comes to play!
So, This is when my husband got involved in the experiment.But that wasn’t enough! He was determined to make that crayon burn! I think he missed part of the point of this experiment!
Now, the CraZArt crayon is really going and Crayola is a little wimpy. This led to some other thoughts and questions to think about.But then, the flame bounced back.
We did this experiment with my 25 year old, 15 year old and old enough to know better husband. The girls thought the flame looked very white and wondered if it had anything to do with the crayon color. Both crayons we used were white. So, a new color was added.
Sadly, the answer was no.
As the flame got lower, it got smaller. The question was: “Does it need to be trimmed like a wick?”
Look what happens when he uses tin snips to cut the “wick” down.
Look how big the Crayola flame came back!
Okay, so, husband didn’t quite get the point of the experiment and knocked over the Crayola crayon. I made them put it out. Don’t put water on it! My daughter almost got burned, wringing water from a paper towel onto it. Using the wet paper towel to snuff out the flame worked much, much better!
What a mess!!!
What we learned through this experiment with crayons
- The crayon doesn’t burn but the paper around it does
- The paper around the crayon is what burns and it burns fairly slowly
- Crayons just melt
- Crayola burns better and stays lit better than CraZArt crayons
- All colors of crayons melt/burn in the same way with the same colored flame
- Put on a surface that isn’t flammable
- Snuff out (suffocate the flame) with a damp paper towel. DON’T throw or drop water on it!
- Need to cut it down to help it burn better
- It will burn for 20- 30 minutes and give as much light as a candle.
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