Friday, January 08, 2010

Boredom Buster #5

With all of our freezing cold weather (14 degrees in Texas - what's that about???), we were in serious need of some good indoor fun! I remembered Hannah commenting on "Ooobleck," so I did some research...

Apparently, the idea of Oobleck originates from the Dr. Suess book "Bartholomew and the Ooobleck". If it wasn't so stinkin' cold, we would have made a trek to the library to check that book out. However, that would have defeated the purpose of creating "indoor" fun. ;)

So, we made oobleck. It was cool! "Oobleck is a non-newtonian fluid. That is, it acts like a liquid when being poured, but like a solid when a force is acting on it." (SOURCE) It was a pretty cool science experiment (if your a dork, like me :) ).

1 1/2 - 2 cups of cornstarch
1 cup of water
food coloring

First, we tinted our water by mixing in a few drops of food coloring. Clayton chose orange.

Let's have a moment of silence for all those Texas fans.

Alright, at the risk of upsetting my t.u. loving husband, that's all that I'll say about that.

We put the water in the bowl and then mixed in the cornstarch gradually until I was happy with the consistency. This was the hardest part for me, because the cornstarch felt just like chalk.

Extremely Random Sidenote: At the risk of exposing all of my issues... I have issues with chalk. I cannot stand the feel of chalk. It has plagued me my whole life. I remember being in early elementary school and praying that the teacher wouldn't call on me to go and write on the chalkboard. That would require touching chalk. And, I may throw up. Then, in 2nd grade, Mrs. Thompson got one of those nifty metal chalk holders. I was thrilled that I could write on the board without touching the chalk! That truly is one of my most vivid elementary school memories. Issues, people... issues.

I still blame my dislike for chalk as the reason that I was never an Olympic gymnast. I progressed in gymnastics until I was to the phase where we did a routine on the uneven bars. This, of course, required me to chalk up my hands before doing my routine. YUCK! I would put the tiniest bit on my hands, and my coach was always scolding me for not using enough. And, thus, my gymnastics career was cut short.

So sad.

I'm certain that I would have been a gold medalist, if it weren't for my chalky texture issues. Surely, my hips and love of chocolate had nothing to do with my departure from gymnastics... It was the chalk. That's my story, and I'm sticking to it!

Back to the Ooobleck....

After adding almost the full 2 cups of cornstarch, we had the right consistency. It was liquidy when poured, but solid when you pounded your fist into it.

Cool, huh?

We talked about secondary colors (mixing red & yellow to make orange), stages of matter (solid, liquid, and gas), sounded out words (cornstarch, food coloring), and worked on measurements. And.... Clayton didn't even know that he was learning.

He just knew that we were making something that was ooey-gooey. And that his Mama was getting the heebie jeebies from the cornstarch. :)


Mrs. H said...

What a creative way to spend your day. Clayton didn't even realize that this was educational. I think that should be called a "teachable moment". Be the way, is Clayton getting taller? He looks so grown up.

Hannah said...

SO FUN! Thanks for doing the "research" for me! Sorry it involved chalk-like material : ) I love you girl!

Mary's Pics said...

That is awesome. And I always wondered why you didn't get the gold. This makes a lot of sense.

Matt & Cindy Fleharty said...

OOps, this is Cindy. I was logged in as my mom :) My mom says HI by the way!

Melissa said...

Girl, you make me laugh! :) I remember making oobleck with my 2nd graders. Fun times!

JULIE said...

I totally get the chalk issues. I hate chalk feels so icky!! I also hate having to handle bread dough or pie crust dough...anything that requires adding in extra flour and mixing it with your hands. It's a texture thing or something.