Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Black Magic...

The crayon kind!

 Do remember breaking all your crayons in an attempt to make a black magic picture? Do you remember how your arm got soooo sore scribbling back and forth as hard you could muster? Do you remember just how awesome your final picture looked? It made all that hard work worth it! Now it is time to clue your kidlets in, the scrumdilly-do way!

What you need:
*light colored cardboard or card stock
*sponges or sponge brushes
*black or dark acrylic paint
*mess happy clothes
*covered work surface
*toothpicks or chopsticks

scrumdilly-do it!
 Set up your workspace and give each kidlet a piece of card stock or two. Dump out those crayons and encourage your kidlets to cover their paper with as much crayon as possible. The darker the crayon the better, and the less waxy the crayon the better. This is where crayola brand really shines but any brand will do. The key is to cover so encourage your wee ones to make patterns, not pictures. Ask questions about their favorite colors. I once had a wee one cover their cardboard in all the green crayons he could find. It made for a super nifty etching.
 Once their papers are covered, squeeze a bit of paint either onto the surface or in a paint tray, cup, bowl or cupcake liner. Now it is time to paint over all that hard work. Acrylic paints work best as they are pretty thick. You want a thick layer of paint to cover the crayon. Having more than one crayon-covered piece to work on will help with the wait. Your kidlets can paint one at a time and move onto a second coat seemingly sooner than if making only one black magic sheet. The acrylic dries enough pretty quick so go ahead and slap on another coat of paint. Once all sheets are painted, set aside for a thorough drying, about 15 minutes. Try using other colors, not just black. A darker paint of course will have more impact.

 Once your sheets are dry, it is time for the etching fun to begin. Pass out toothpicks or chopsticks or knitting needles even, if your wee ones know not to use them as swords or weapons of mass destruction. Direct your kidlets to scratch away at the layer of paint to reveal all that swoony color underneath. Have fun! You may want to spend some time decorating the toothpicks while they wait for their boards to dry. Pass out some scissors, colored paper or felt and glue. Cut out crazy fun shapes and images to glue to the tops of the toothpicks and viola, a fancy, schmancy etching tool is created!

 If you find yourself up with nothing to do, you may want to prep a bunch of boards to pull out when you need something fast. These are great for the car, super market and doctor’s visits. Toss a bunch of boards into a bag along with a couple of toothpicks and you are ready to dazzle!


  1. wow I luv this activity... it is one of my all time faves from childhood... thanx for the reminder
    luv Abby

  2. oh my, this reminds me of summer camp arts & crafts! brings me back! thanks so much, now i can pass this along and teach my girls!

  3. I used to love this as a kid! YAY Jek!!

  4. I found your site while googling this:

    remember that black waxy paper you used in grade school, and when you scratched the surface, colors were underneath?

    I like your version!!

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