The Crayon Rock Cycle

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In this activity, learners use crayons to draw conclusions about rocks and the rock cycle. Learners form crayons ((which can be "weathered"—heated, compressed and cooled—like rocks) into models of sedimentary, metamorphic, and igneous rocks.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
45 to 60 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$5 - $10 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 18

Resource Types:
Activity, Model


Materials List (per group of students)

  • Crayons – at least two different colors of wax crayons, at least one stick per student
  • Source of very hot water
  • Aluminum Foil and/or foil cupcake cups
  • Container to hold hot water
  • Simple scrapping device (Popsicle stick, plastic knifes)


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Processes
      • Geochemical Cycles
    • Earth Structure
      • Rocks and Minerals
    • Earth's History
      • Geologic Time
  • Physical Sciences
    • Heat and Thermodynamics
      • Heat and Temperature
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations

Informal Categories

  • Model Building
  • Nature and Environment


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • see color
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Muller, Eric


  • All rights reserved, Exploratorium, 2004