Happy Earth day!
We’ve been working on a project all week with the extra time. Something that we’ve all been able to do together.
It’s been a great lead up to [tag]Earth day[/tag].
Here’s how we made seeded paper.
Gather the materials together
Tear paper into the smallest pieces to great music.
Tearing is better than cutting or shredded paper as the rough tear works better with absorbing the water. It was also a great family night activity sitting around talking and tearing.
We had quite a few times when the LO decided that shredded paper was a lot more fun if it was floating. I think he wanted to rescue the paper.
Here’s our torn paper pile
Cover with warm water and allow to stand for 24 hours. Stirring every now and then. You want very wet paper.
24 hours later……..
Scoop paper and a little water into a blender and pulp in batches by pulsing. ( The kids loved this part- machines, water, pouring)
Tip into a colander so the pulp can drain while you’re batching the next set.
Use a bowl that fits inside of your colander to squeeze further water out of the draining pulp. We had strong man contests to see who could squeeze the most.
This is what we had left after tearing, soaking, blending, squeezing and draining– Paper pulp.
Empty the pulp back into the bowl and add seeds liberally. ( We used one packet per child.)
With the seeds mixed in now it was time to make the homemade paper press.
Living in a dry climate has it’s advantages. We could do this outside.
Everything was in a layer.
I cut a bin ( trash) bag in half then added a tea towel. Bag was to protect the bottom surface from water. It was our patio table so it was fine but if you’re inside then I can see how this would be important.
Place the pulp and mixed in seeds on top of the tea towel and spread around in a rough rectangle.
We all took turns smoothing and moving the pulp into place with a spoon and our fingers.
Cover wet pulpy seed paper with a second tea towel and finish with the other half of the bin ( trash) bag.
Weigh the layers down with books, rocks and whatever you have to squeeze the water out and produce a homemade press.
We left ours in a sunny spot. Each day we peered at it. I changed the top tea towel once and we let the sun in for a couple of hours. I also added a few rocks to the top. It dried flat in 3 days outside for us.
4 days later………..
With the seeds in the pulp and now the paper has dried. The seeds are inside the paper. If you plant this paper the paper should biodegrade and with sun and water we should see flowers.
Both boys are excited to share their project with their teachers and we get to plant seeded paper too. Flat enough to go in the mail.
They were pretty amazed that the seeds were inside the paper. Even though they did the work and saw it every day they are convinced of magic 🙂