If you have kids in the house that love messy, sensory activities this is a great holiday themed one that you cant miss out on! Goo, Goop, Oobleck, slime…It has many names and is a super fun way to keep them busy, sneak some science in, build fine motor skills, and just let them be kids. The combination of water and cornstarch creates a new texture that is at the same time a liquid and a solid. When you grab it, squeeze it into a ball- it's a solid. Let it run through your fingers and it is back to liquid form again.
Supplies for Oobleck
- peppermint extract/essential oil
- red food coloring
- tools for observation, mixing, experimenting
Combine cornstarch and water to make as much or as little as you like using a 2:1 Cornstarch:Water ratio (start with 1 cup of water and 1 1/2 cups cornstarch, then add more cornstarch as needed). It is really great year round but add peppermint essential oil or extract and some red food coloring and you have a festive peppermint scented/colored batch.
I wanted to make a small batch in a round pan to create a batch that resembled a round peppermint candy. I used 2 cups cornstarch and 1 cup water, 2 tsp. peppermint extract, and about 8-10 drops red food color. I dropped the red food coloring in the center and used a butter knife to draw squiggly lines outward.
For this oobleck I gave her a whisk and a wooden spoon to stir with so she could get to feel the resistance between an open and a flat surface. Her favorite tool was her hands however-scooping, squeezing, draining, and splatting.
If you've never played with Oobleck (or even if you have), you'll find yourself just as interested in this science activity as the children! To make it more of a homeschooling activity, talk about the different states of matter (solid, liquid, and gas) while you play. Ask your children to think of different solids and liquids. Talk about things they've seen that change form. Popsicles and ice are the two that most children seem to identify easily.
Have you ever played with Oobleck? Who had more fun – you or the kids?