Frozen Oobleck

This week’s #ShareScience theme is frozen or winter themed play dough or slime. I wanted to make a frozen slime for Aiden. What better material to use than oobleck? Frozen oobleck is cold and squishy, and it doubles the fun of normal oobleck. Give it a try and tell me what you think!

Frozen Oobleck

Frozen Oobleck

You’ll Need:

  • cornstarch
  • water
  • liquid watercolors or food coloring (optional)
  • glitter (optional)
  • bowl
  • spoon
  • ice cube trays, silicone molds, or a container to place in the freezer

How to Make the Frozen Oobleck:

  1. Add about 1/2 cup of cornstarch to a large bowl.
  2. Slowly add up to a 1/2 cup of water. I usually don’t need all of the water. Mix until you get the consistency you desire. If you add too much water, just add more cornstarch. (Kids can help with this step.)
  3. Add food coloring or liquid watercolors. Food coloring has the potential to stain. Watercolors are usually washable. Just pay attention to the ingredients in the paints if your child is likely to put his hands in his mouth. (Most paints are non-toxic and shouldn’t be a problem in small amounts.)
  4. Pour the oobleck into molds. We used silicone heart molds and star ice cube trays.
  5. Place the molds in the freezer for at least a few hours.

Freezing the oobleck creates a solid. As the oobleck melts, the consistency keeps changing. This will keep your child interested for quite a while.

Frozen Oobleck

Place the frozen oobleck in a container and place a towel under the container or cover you work area. It could get messy.

frozen oobleck

Your children can build and stack the frozen oobleck shapes. Thinner pieces melted faster. Our stars lasted longer than the thin hearts.

stacking frozen oobleck

Add toys to the oobleck and let your child have fun.

frozen oobleck

Cornstarch and Ice

I also froze some blue colored water. Add the ice to cornstarch to create a completely new sensory experience. As the ice melts, oobleck is made.

ice and cornstarch

Add toys to this as well. Let your child use her imagination. Is it an arctic wonderland or a gooey swamp?

ice and cornstarch
The dog is playing the role of an arctic wolf.

As the ice melts, does the story change?

ice and cornstarch

The Science Behind It

Oobleck is a non-Newtonian fluid. It doesn’t behave like a “normal” liquid. It has properties of both a solid and a liquid depending on the amount of stress applied. When stress is applied, the cornstarch and water mixture acts like a solid (your hand can’t go through; you just squish it like play dough). When constant stress is not applied, the mixture acts like a liquid.

Have fun exploring the frozen oobleck with your child. Stop by Facebook and let me know!

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