Recycled Keepsake Tins

keepsaketins A creative and simple Easter project!


  • To create a one-of-a-kind decorative keepsake
  • To recycle and reuse common materials for a fun craft
  • To encourage creativity and self expression
  • To create a unique item for a class game

Before You Start: Ask children to bring clean, empty mint/candy tins from home (or provide some for those who may not have any). Set out bowls with BioColor® paint, paintbrushes and sponges, Colorations® Washable School Glue, buttons, ribbon, beads, foam shapes, pom-poms and other collage materials. Label large bins for recycled items (paper, plastic, cans, etc.) and place around the classroom for the class game.

Let's Get Started! Step 1. Provide each child with a tin. Explain to the students that they will each be participating in a class game using their tins once they have completed decorating them. This is a great opportunity to talk about the environment and how the concept of recycling relates to the game.

Step 2. Allow the children to paint and decorate their tins any way they wish using materials provided, and set aside to dry. As this is an open-ended activity, encourage them to experiment with colors and textures.

Step 3. Now each child has their own one-of-a-kind box to keep small treasures, give as a gift and to participate in a class game.

Step 4. For the game: have each child place their tins in a designated spot in the classroom. Explain that each morning, there will be a surprise (the teacher can decide what small item he or she wants to hide) hidden in someone's tin. Whoever gets the surprise will be "Recycling Captain" for the day. As "Recycling Captain" the child will be in charge of making sure that any and all "trash" gets placed in correct bins (trash, paper, plastic, etc.) that they see placed around the classroom. Periodically, the class can look at the bins and see how much they've recycled over time. The teacher can decide how the class can celebrate (or provide an incentive/reward) for their work towards improving their classroom environment.

Furthermore: This craft and game are great activities for Earth Day! The teacher may also gather the children at circle time and read The Lorax by Dr. Suess or other children's books that promote environmental awareness.

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