Bring Back To School Supplies Back From The Dead

July 01, 2014
Back to school supply lists have returned, despite the fact that you have 8 tubs of leftover supplies in your basement. If you can’t send the kids back to school with last year’s supplies, try these 3 fun and crafty ways to get the most out of those crayons and markers. Who knows, maybe you’ll finally get rid of them all—by 2026.

Old crayons, new tricks

Broken crayons are perhaps the most depressing of school supplies. But don’t throw them away! Instead, melt your stubs down and turn them into new crayons. We used muffin tins, but depending on what mold you choose (try soap molds or pastel trays), you could turn them into all kinds of shapes! Just make sure to melt them in heat-safe containers.


  • Broken crayons
  • Muffin Tray 
  • Oven


  • 1 Gather all your old, broken crayons.
  • 2 Remove all wrappers.
  • 3 Put crayons in muffin tray tins. You can organize by color or just throw in whatever!
  • 4 Melt down the crayons in an oven.
  • 5 Let cool.
  • 6 Enjoy!


If you aren’t using muffin tins, carefully pour the hot wax into your molds before letting it cool.

Colored pencil vase

Colored pencils are great for more than just coloring. Rather than add more pencils to the overflowing tub of colors, try making a fun vase out of your leftover colored pencils. It’s super easy and works great as a teacher gift.


  • Colored pencils
  • An old can or cup
  • Hot glue
  • Rubber band


  • 1 Establish a color pattern. Or just wing it!
  • 2 Wrap a rubber band tightly around your can.
  • 3 Add your colored pencils in the pattern you’d like.
  • 4 Remove your colored pencil, add a line of hot glue and replace it. Make sure to mark where you started!
  • 5 Let the vase cool for a few hours before removing the rubber band.
  • 6 Add flowers!

Marker Watercolors


Dried up markers. They sneak their way into every supply drawer. Don’t let that sad, faint line fool you—there’s plenty of life left in your markers! All you have to do is add water and a paint brush.


  • Dried up markers
  • Ziploc® containers
  • Water


  • 1 Depending on how many old markers you have, group them according to color, i.e., all your shades of reds, yellows, blues, etc.
  • 2 Put each shade grouping, or individual marker, into a Ziploc® container of water. The less water you use, the stronger the color.
  • 3 Let them sit. The longer you let them sit, the more intense the colors will be.
  • 4 And have fun painting!
  • 5 Screw the tops back on the Ziploc® containers and store the rest for another time.