Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Candy Cane Ornaments

The holidays are so much fun with all the parties, seasonal activities, and family fun!  And with all these events, candy canes are always given out.  The girls love candy canes, but I thought is would be fun to make candy cane ornaments to hang on their tree.

This experiment is pretty easy, but as you will see, we had a few problems.  Mostly because of timing. 


First, collect candy canes that you have been given, or go buy some, and take of the plastic wrapper.




Place the unwrapped candy canes on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet and place it in the oven.  Jelly Bean and Jumping Bean find it amazing to watch the candy canes melt and flatten out.



Our candy canes flattened out a little too much, but we are going to see what happens.


Huh, the candy canes keep breaking.  Jumping Bean is suggesting that the candy canes are too hard, and they snap once we try to bend the candy canes (I agree.  We waited too long, and they cooled too much.)


We revised our plan.  Jelly Bean and Jumping Bean broke the candy canes into smaller pieces.


Then, I sprayed cookie cutters with non-stick cooking spray.  Jelly Bean and Jumping Bean filled the cookie cutters in with the broken pieces of candy cane.


The cookie cutters and candy canes were placed back into the oven once again to melt.
Once cooled slightly, the girls popped out the candy cane shapes.
It took us a little too long again, and the candy cane shapes cooled before I could put a hole in them for the pipe cleaner to hang on the tree.  So, I put the cookie cutters back around the shapes (not pictured) and placed them in the oven for a bit.  Then, I quickly poked a hole through the top with a metal meat thermometer.


The candy cane ornaments look great on Jelly Bean and Jumping Beans Christmas tree!

Even though the experiment did not go as planned the first time, the girls got to learn about how heating something up can change it and make it easier to change its shape.  It was also a great introduction for them to learn how heat is used to melt something and when left out it will then cool and re-solidify.  
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Supplies:
  • candy canes
  • cookie cutters
  • cookie sheet
  • parchment paper
  • non-stick cooking spray
  • pipe cleaner
  • metal rod (I used a meat thermometer)
Instructions:
  1. Break candy canes into small pieces.  You can also place them on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet and place them in the oven first at 250 degrees for 10 minutes to soften and flatten them.
  2. Spray cookie cutters with non-stick spray.
  3. Place broken pieces in the cookie cutters covering the bottom.
  4. Place in a 250 degree oven for 10 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and with a metal rod, poke a hole in the top of the candy cane shape.
  6. Pop out the candy cane shape.
  7. Use a pipe cleaner to hang the candy cane ornament on the tree.


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