Thursday, March 22, 2012

How To Dye Noodles

This week we dyed an assortment of colored noodles for some upcoming Spring projects. This is a classic activity for preschool children. The kids had so much fun dying and using the noodles and it was a great opportunity for some fine motor skill practice.

To dye noodles, we used:
  • Rubbing Alcohol (or White Vinegar - I recommend the vinegar, but we had some rubbing alcohol in the first aid kit that I wanted to use up. Dying with vinegar allows you to still use the noodles for cooking and is safer with small children who will inevitably have to put a dyed noodle in their mouth. Since we're only using our noodles for crafts, this gave me a chance to use up our rubbing alcohol.)
  • Noodles - you can use any kind. We used elbow macaroni for crafts, but I'd also recommend doing some Rigatoni for stringing necklaces. Bow tie pasta and rotini are also fun for collages.
  • Food Coloring - You can buy this in the 4-pack and combine the colors to make any color that you like
  • Ziplock Bags
1. First, I poured about 1/4 cup of rubbing alcohol into each Ziplock bag.  (If using vinegar, substitute with 2 Tablespoons.)
2. Then, we counted out approximately 7 drops of food coloring. You can use more or less depending on the shade that you want.
3. Next, we added a little less than a cup of noodles to each bag.
4. Seal tightly and then let the kids shake the bags. You can give each child a different color bag or pass the bags around so that every child gets a chance with each color.
5. Lay the bags flat to absorb the color. I left ours for a few hours.
6. Open the bags and allow to dry overnight. You can also lay them out on a cookie sheet lined with paper towels or newspaper. I wasn't in a rush for ours so I left them in the bags to dry overnight.

The next day, we pulled out our noodles to make these fun rainbows. I also plan to let the kids create Easter Egg collages with their noodles.
What other fun projects have you done with colored noodles?





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12 comments:

  1. I love this! Will definitely be doing this next week! :)

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  2. Fun times. Wish I saw this before. I'm having a rainbow party for my daughter, and we're doing a similar craft with fruit loops. I like the noodles though.

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  3. i just made sme colored pasta today using the vineger method and im wondering if I soaked te noodles too long. They seem to be very soft now and im hoping they will eventually dry out..i made kindof alot..any idea if they will eventually dry? or should i start over..

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    1. Yes, they do dry out. I made a bunch with this and left them out overnight. It also helps to dry them in a single layer on a cookie sheet lined with newspaper. I still have a bunch left that we pull out for sorting activities and crafts :)

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  4. I think I might try this in our play group. We are makin macorini necklaces so this is perfect for painting them!

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    1. Danielle, if you're using them for a play group, I would recommend dying them the day before so they have plenty of time to dry. This was a 2-day activity for us. The kids just love making the different colors and using them. We have gotten lots of use out of them! Thanks for stopping by and commenting :)

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  5. I think I might try this in our play group. We are makin macorini necklaces so this is perfect for painting them!

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  6. I think I might try this in our play group. We are makin macorini necklaces so this is perfect for painting them!

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  7. I love those pumpkins you made--so fun!! Thanks so much for sharing this!

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  8. Thank you for this tutorial, Tina. We'll be making pink necklaces for our daughter's play date party :)

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    1. Oh, I'm so glad you'll be able to use it! Happy birthday to your daughter!

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  9. I want to use bowtie pasta for pasta salad but I want tbhe pasta in pink lime green nd turquiose what wud u recommend

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