Using Styrofoam

It works great to use as a paint pallet, to mix colors on,etc. Trish

My kids and I love to make things from all the Styrofoam packing peanuts I get from my online orders.  We glue them on pictures or use them under paper mache to add definition without the weight.  They come in several different colors but the white ones are best for making Christmas decorations.  One simple one is to make a cardboard cone to be a Christmas tree.  Then glue either all white packing peanuts and then wipe with a watered down solution of white glue or use some kind of spray adhesive before sprinkling with sparkles.  We even string them together to make necklaces with or you can make garland for your Christmas tree with them.   Diane

Lids from egg cartons can be cut into  shapes for children to  use in many ways:  Stencils can be cut with a Exacto knife for children to use in painting on their bedroom walls. Draw on the Styrofoam with a Sharpie marker, and carefully cut with knife.  Cut several of each one, make the shapes not too detailed…simple like fish, then cut the fin shape in another stencil to use over the first one when the paint dries… The same for the fish tail and eyes if you want more details. Heck we adults can use them like this too…. Jean

When doing cross-stitch projects I take a sharpie and label areas of Styrofoam with thread numbers. I then spot glue it to my project board. Which includes glued on pincushion. I then thread the different needles with the colors needed and place them in the areas noted . I also try to put the symbol used in the project in each area. this Way I don’t have to stop, separate, and then thread a needle each time.  Pam

You can use Styrofoam cups to start seedlings before planting them in a garden.    If you buy tomatoes at the grocery store, you can use the Styrofoam tray underneath a plant pot to avoid messing overfills. The tray will catch any water that might overfill.  Robin

I wash the trays that come from vegetables, and use then as an artist’s tray.  I can mix colors or just put globs of colors on the tray. My daughter’s preschool uses them for painting, too. I also use them as a sorting tray when I make craft items in a assembly line. Each tray holds a part, etc. I never use the trays from meat, the risk is too high. Jamie

You can use those big chunks of Styrofoam that TVs and stereos come packaged in to make a fun gross motor toy for kids. I use this in my special education classroom and the kids love it. First, get some golf tees (about $2 for new, or scrounge up some old ones) and either a toy hammer that your kids already have or a rubber mallet (I use a mallet in my classroom). Then, let the kids pound the tees into the foam. It’s much safer than the real thing, the tees are reusable when the foam is too torn up to use, and the kids get to practice eye-hand coordination skills while having fun! If you are doing this with really little kids, you’ll need to supervise so they don’t accidentally choke on the tees or chunks of foam  Stephanie

My contribution for the use of Styrofoam is as follows: use the "peanuts" or  small pieces in the bottom of potted plants instead of the gravel or broken pottery to allow the water to drain, this also lightens the weight of the pot considerably. Rebecca