KIDSGAZETTE

Fun with Shrinky Dinks

A completed pigeon Shrinky Dink project. You can make your own with a kit from the Cedar Rapids Public Library. (Photo c
A completed pigeon Shrinky Dink project. You can make your own with a kit from the Cedar Rapids Public Library. (Photo credit Victoria Fernandez/The Cedar Rapids Public Library)
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Shrinky Dinks are a type of plastic that you can use to color on and cut into shapes. Then, you put it in the oven and watch it shrink. Invented in 1973, these little crafts are a classic and can seem like magic, but really there is no magic. Shrinky Dinks are just made from #6 plastic you can find inside a box, like the ones that hold your favorite brand of store bought cookies or a plastic clamshell. In fact, scientists even use Shrinky Dink technology to study nanotechnology, which is just technology on a very small scale.

This week, the Cedar Rapids Public Library is offering you free Shrinky Dink paper through their Summer DARE Program. You can call the library at 319-261-READ and pick up a free craft kit! Or search your home for #6 plastic, some permanent markers, a baking sheet, wax paper and a hole punch.

How to make a Shrinky Dink

1. Have an adult help you preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

2. Cut the Shrinky Dink paper, or your #6 plastic into the shape you want. The library craft kits also come with keychains, so punch a hole in your Shrinky Dink shape if you are making a keychain.

3. On the plastic, trace a character from your favorite book in permanent marker. You can also color anything you want on there.

4. Place wax paper on top of a baking sheet and put your Shrinky Dink on the baking sheet.

5. Put the Shrinky Dinks in the oven for about one to three minutes. Watch them very carefully. First they will curl up and then flatten back down.

6. Take the Shrinky Dinks out of the oven and let them cool.

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