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Bioplastic decorations

Bioplastic decs header

Christmas decorations really help you get in the festive mood, but they are often made from oil-based plastics which when disposed can have a negative impact on the oceans and the animals which live there. In this activity you will make your own Christmas decorations using a compostable alternative, bioplastic made from corn.

Mixing and heating ingredients you will form your own bioplastic in the shape of a Christmas decoration. Through adding further detailing your decoration will be ready to hang from the Christmas tree.

Activity steps

1. Measure 1 tablespoon of cornstarch into your plastic bag.

2. Add 2 tablespoon of water to the cornstarch.

3. Add 1 teaspoon of corn oil to the mixture in your bag.

4. Add 1 teaspoon of food colouring to the mixture in your bag. Add less or more depending on the intensity of colour desired.

5. Seal the bag and squash it or stir it gently to mix everything together.

6. Put the mixture into Christmas style moulds and heat them in the microwave until slightly yellow. Do not heat for too long or else it will become crumbly.

7. Leave your plastic in the Christmas style moulds over night to dry and harden.

Further ideas

Add further details to your Christmas decorations using paint and pens. Details may include drawing the white fury parts to Santa's outfit or adding a golden finish to a reindeers' antlers. Check that your art materials fix to the corn bioplastic in advance.

To allow your decoration to hang from the tree, glue a ribbon on to the back.

The ratio of cornstarch to water you use will change the properties of your plastic. Adding less cornstarch will create a softer plastic whereas adding more will create a harder plastic.