Friday, May 25, 2012

Theory Thursday: Oobleck

This is one of our favorite experiments. Anything that is goopy, gooey, messy, gluey, slimy, grimy, hands-on fun is always a favored activity in our house. Even my 2 year old has started to ask daily, "We do science?"

So what concoction has taken the number one spot?


It gets it's name from Seuss' Bartholomew and the Oobleck, but isn't nearly as invasive. It's actually a non-newtonian fluid whose flow properties differ from other liquids. In other words, it can be both a liquid and a solid. 

Not only is it really fun to play with, but it's also super simple to make. And I bet you already have the ingredients in your kitchen.

You'll need 1 cup cornstarch, 1/2 cup water, food coloring (optional), a bowl, and a spoon.

Dump the ingredients into the bowl and stir.

Or try to stir. 

The mixture instantly takes on the solid form and makes it difficult to combine thoroughly. Jake told Alyssa, "Here, let me do it. I have muscles." Even he struggled though, and I took over. 

 Then came the fun! They all tried touching it and were surprised how firm it was.

 But once they had a handful of it, it slurped out of their fingers as it changed back to a liquid.

 They rolled it into balls and said it was like play dough.

 Once they released the pressure, it change back into a slimy glob.

They loved this stuff! Jake even sang an oobleck song as they experimented. It's gotta be pretty special stuff to deserve its own song. They played forever with it, scooping it up and watching it drip back down. They've already asked when they can play again.

That is, if I let them play again. I just might keep this stuff to myself! 

Yeah, it's that fun.

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  1. Can I come over and play!!!!

  2. That stuff is so much fun. My kids like making and playing with it, too.

  3. How fun!!! I remember doing that with my kids several years ago - it was a blast!

  4. Oh my goodness my kids would love this. I would hate the mess though so I am torn.