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Cooking Up Toys In Kitchen

Combine math, art and science lessons into fun, low-cost projects you can whip up with items that can be found right in your own kitchen.

Co-author of The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions, John Thomas shares his recipes with CBS News This Morning.

Everything you need is right in your own home, Thomas says. He has come up with recipes for projects costing less than a dollar to make and providing hours of fun for your child.

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Treasure Stones size>

These stones are made with little treasures like toys or jewelry inside.

A mystery stone is opened to reveal a treasure.size>
1 cup of flour
1 cup of used coffee grinds
1/2 cup of salt
1 1/4 cup of sand
1 cup of water

Mix ingredients in a bowl and mold them into a ball. Make an indentation in the dough. Select a secret treasure to place in the middle. Wrap the dough around it.

Let the stone air dry for two to three days or until it hardens. Or bake it in the oven on a cookie sheet at 150 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes. Once it's dry, kids can break the rock apart to find a treasure.

Sparkle Bottle size>

Metallic glitter is magically suspended in a plastic soda bottle, creating a rainbow of swirling colors.

Glitter dresses up a bottle.
Light corn syrup
Assorted shapes of metallic confetti
Cold water
1 plastic bottle and cap

Fill the soda bottle with corn syrup three-quarters of the way. Add a small handful of metallic confetti. Top the bottle off with water. Seal the bottle securely with a cap and shake.

A similar project, Ocean in a Bottle, captures the look of rumpling ocean waves in a small, handheld bottle. Mix regular kitchen oil with a little blue food coloring and water to create something resembling a lava lamp.

Splongee Ballsize>

A ball similar to this one could cost $14.95 in a store but you can make one for less than a dollar. Kids can play with it inside the house without breaking anything.

3 large sponges
1 large cable tie

Cut each sponge lengthwise into thirds. Stack the sponges on top of each other. Grab the stack of sponges and twist it once.

Secure it with a plastic cable tie around the center of the twisted stack, pulling it as tight as possible. Trim the plastic cable tie down as close as possible to the middle of the ball.

This soft ball is ready for indoor tryouts.
The Ultimate Book of Kid Concoctions

Fifty percent of the book's recipes are classic recipes for fun things that never turn out quite as they were supposed to, Thomas says. He and his partner Danita Pagel merely improved upon the classics. The other 50 percent they created, he adds.

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