Monday, March 31, 2008

O........Is for Oobleck!



Ooooooowhat? Oobleck! YES....Oobleck. The ever awesome Carolyn reminded me the other day of this super fun substance. Thanks girl! I had not only been searching for the perfect post for the Letter O (yes, I am horribly behind in my ALPHABET SERIES), but I had also been in serious need of a fresh idea for Sugar Bear. You see.....last week was Spring Break for us. I was off work.....Sugar Bear wasn't attending Day Care or preschool.....and we got a bit stir crazy. I am used to adult interaction, and she is TOTALLY used to playing with her friends four days a week. The fact that we were home sick for the two weeks prior to Spring Break only added to the feeling of complete and total cabin fever.



Anyhow, I had become familiar with this fabulous substance back in my college days while doing my practicum for my Early Childhood Education major. Somehow, over the years(oh my has it really been 12 years?) I had forgotten. Like I have said before....I have forgotten way more than I'll ever remember. tee hee



The other day, Sugar Bear and I set out to making some Oobleck. All we needed was 2 parts corn starch, and one part water. We added a few drops of food coloring for interest. Sugar Bear chose blue.....one of her favorite colors.



Surprisingly, Sugar Bear showed some reluctance to get her hands into the gooey mess. As you may know, I have worked hard to encourage Sugar's appreciation of all things. I am constantly giving her opportunities to try new things, and build her confidence. She rarely shys away from anything. I was really caught off guard by her recent dislike of getting things on her hands.







After stirring in the blue dye, she wanted to be done. She hadn't even experienced the MAGIC of Oobleck yet, so I put the camera down for awhile, and jumped in. I played and played while she observed. I worked hard to describe my play, and pique her interest. Within 5 minutes she was hooked, and couldn't resist getting in on the game.



After a quick rinse of my hands, I was able to photograph her process of discovery. The great thing about Oobleck is the fact that when you push hard and quickly on the surface of it, it will be a firm substance, but as soon as your hand stops moving it quickly turns to a liquid. It is really, really fascinating. It is emparative to not that Oobleck must be kept in a container while playing with it. It is not in anyway like play doh.



In the end, Sugar's favorite activity was grabbing a bunch of it, then letting it ooze all over her other hand.....or better yet....my hand. It has a cool temperature and feels funny on the back of your hand.



Her only complaint was the smell. I am not sure if my corn starch happened to be stale, or if large quantities just has a strong odor, but it smelled awful. I kept wondering if the consistency would be altered if I added some peppermint extract. I may have to try it next time.



All in all, it was a great little project. I have kept it in a Tupperware bowl, and we have just added a bit of water a few times to re-play with it again. I have a hard time wasting so much cornstarch on a one time activity. Yes....I am cheap like that.

23 Live It or Love It:

Kat said...

Are these the sweetest pictures of Sugar Bear yet? I think so. You can see she gets a good kick out of helping around the kitchen. Very well captured.

napaboaniya said...

Interesting! Something I'll try soon with my kids. I've tried flour and water to make sticky play dough but they got irritated that it's nothing like their play doh. *head.desk*
I should let them try this watery one :)

Hanlie said...

I'm writing this down for when I have kids!

Driving With the Brakes On said...

LOVE this stuff! The science guy on our local news was on the Ellen show a few weeks back . . . they made a HUGE vat of Ooblek and then walked across it! As long as you don't stop halfway, you can make it!

My kids are both like that with their hands as well . . . it takes a bit to 'warm-up' to the touching, and then it is all over! Darling pictures.

KatieBug said...

My kids love Oobleck! They also like slime that we make with glue, hot water and borax.

AnnD said...

I will have to keep this in mind for when Emma is older! Great photos...as always!

Jenty said...

That looks like such a cool thing to try!! I'm gonna do that this weekend!

CMB said...

What fun! I have never heard of it, but would love to try it. David would love it - Ava would eat it:)

JC said...

Hmm... never heard of it. Will have to see if my nephew could get into it, soon.

Groovy Mom said...

Oh my kids love that stuff, and you reminded me that I have yet to make a batch of it with my youngest.

Beth said...

We've made this before. I think I need to get some cornstarch so we can make it again.

I love the look of wonder and delight in Sugar's eyes in the first picture.

Childlife said...

Looks fun and I'm lovin' the purple PJ's :)

Our dollar store has GIANT boxes of cornstarch that we love to use at our place for this activity... might be worth checking for, if you don't already have a less expensive source.

What a great choice for the O in your alphabet series!

ispeakbeanish said...

This looks like fun. We'll have to try it at our house. Thanks for the idea.

beth said...

I love projects like this. Looks like sugar loved it. Thanks for the idea!

Carolyn said...

Love it!! Thanks for the link, and the reference to me as “the ever awesome Carolyn”. Although I’m more typically ”the sometimes awesome Carolyn”, but thanks anyway.

Great pics. Glad Sugar Bear finally got into it. You did way more justice to the description of Oobleck than I did. I should probably update my post to include a link to yours. I suppose calling Oobleck my lover doesn’t quite describe the stuff. Oh. And I'm too much of a neat freak to add food colouring, but good for you. And ours didn't smell at all. Ahem. Draw your own conclusion.

The person I got the idea from told me that you can get cornstarch cheap at Costco, but like you, I've got ours saved in a sealed container in the refrigerator. LOL.

Amy said...

Thanks fo sharing. I know Matt would love this one. I have got to try it!

holly said...

i love most activities, but i *hate* this stuff. i don't like crud being on my hands. if i could provide it and get it cleaned up without having to actually touch it, i'd do it. until such time, no dice. playdoh, sure. gooo? no.

Nikkie said...

I have always loved this stuff Corey! We called it Magic Mud when we were kids. I have to try this with my kids one day very soon!

Jo Beaufoix said...

I have never heard of oobleck, but I think E and M would love it...okay, I think I might like it too. I may have to play. :D

Carolyn said...

ps - did you know that Oobleck is named after a Dr. Suess character? Google "Oobleck Wikipedia" for more info...

Deb - Mom of 3 Girls said...

Oh I've heard of oobleck but have never actually seen or played with it. Looks like fun... Interesting! :)

Michie said...

I made oobleck with my kids at school a few weeks ago. It was fun. I actually haven't tried it at home yet. I need to. There is a Dr. Seuss book, "Bartholomew and the Oobleck" that you can read next time you do this if you like. :)

we are reilly said...

this looks fun -- we may have to try it -- I'm just afraid my daughter won't touch it -- she's has issues with things touching her hands...we'll see!

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