Toys Then and Now
Holiday Toys, Gifts and Decorations from Oklahoma Agricultural Products
Many of the toys and gadgets your students are expecting as holiday gifts are made from plastics made with soybeans or corn. Henry Ford experimented with soy-based plastics in the production of his cars. In 1940 he swung an axe at a car trunk to demonstrate the durability of soy plastics.
Make your own plastic from cornstarch and vegetable oil
Remind your students that expensive toys and electronic games have not always been traditional gifts. "Back in the day," children looked forward to fresh fruit in their stockings and often made their own toys from what they could find around the house and farm. Fresh fruit in winter has not always been as readily available as it is now, so it was a special treat. Help your students experience a simpler time by making their own toys with Corncob Toys.
- Write about your first Christmas toy.
- Write a story about the best gift you ever gave to someone else.
More Holiday Decorations and Gifts from Oklahoma Ag Products
- Felted Wool Crafts
- Cotton Boll Angel
- Holiday Decor With Wheat - Take a few stalks of wheat, spray them gold and tie them with a bright ribbon or bow, then fasten them to the tree with a piece of gold wire. Sprinkle on some gold glitter while the paint is wet and it will stick to the seeds.
- Origami (Paper is a product of loblolly pine grown in OK) in the shape of a lamb, a doll, or a pig.
- Paint long, hard dried okra with acrylic paint to look like Santa. Finish by spraying with polyurethane.
- Decorate strips of leather. (Leather is a product of the beef industry)
- Oklahoma red dirt ornaments. Cut simple designs from heavy cardboard and decorate with samples of soil in different colors. (See Dirty Pictures) Mix in glitter to make them more festive.
- Make use of shredded office paper to make pulp for Papier Mache ornaments. (Chewed Paper and Sticky Stuff)
- Make play dough, and shape it in the form of farm animals. Put a hole in the ornament before cooking. After cooking the ornament, glaze with spray varnish. Tie a string through the hole, and you have a keepsake.
- Stick cloves into crab apples, oranges or tangerines for an ornament that smells as wonderful as it looks.
- Scented Heating Pad With Oklahoma Grain (or legumes)
- Turn your leftover pumpkins into Christmas lawn art. Spray paint them white and use a long spike to hold two or three together. Decorate with old hats, gloves, and scarves.