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Making Slime With Kids

June 26, 2018

Slime was a toy product manufactured by Mattel, sold in a plastic trash can and introduced in February 1976. It consisted of a non-toxic viscous, squishy and oozy green or other color material made primarily from guar gum Different variations of Slime were released over the years, including Slime containing rubber insects, eyeballs, and worms. 

There is nothing more fun than making a great batch of slime. We have three fantastic versions of slime including:  Classic, Galactic, and Mermaid slime, just in time for summer!

So, gather your supplies and dive right in. For supplies check out Michaels or Amazon.

Classic Slime

What You Need to Make Slime

  • Borax powder (Sodium Tetraborate)
  • Water
  • 4 ounces (120 ml) glue (Elmer's white glue)
  • Teaspoon
  • 2 Bowls (disposable)
  • Food coloring (optional)
  • Measuring cup
  1. Pour the glue into one of the bowls. Use only Elmer's Glue for the best results.  You will want 4 oz or 1/2 cup of glue. You can mix in food coloring at this point to make your slime the color you want!
  2. Add 1/2 cup of water to the glue and mix.
  3. Then mix one cup (240 ml) of water into another bowl and add 1 teaspoon (5 ml) of borax powder. Borax powder(old fashioned detergent) can be found in the laundry isle of any grocery store.
  4. Slowly stir the glue mixture into the bowl.
  5. Place the slime that forms into your hands and knead until it feels dry. Don't worry about the excess water remaining in the bowl.
  6. The more the slime is played with, the sooner it will be firm and easier to play with. 
  7. Store your slime in a zip-lock bag or jar in the fridge. Slime can begin to grow mold over time if not refrigerated. 

Caution: Excessive exposure to Borax can cause some individuals to have an unfavorable skin reaction. For an Borax free version , you can substitute liquid starch for the Borax solution.

Mermaid Slime

 Mermaids are mythical half-human sea creatures with the upper body of a girl or woman and the tail of a fish. Mermaids are mentioned in sea folklores and are usually depicted as beautiful and gentle creatures that guide sailors and others travelling through the seas. This version of slime would be perfect as an activity at the beach or sea shore-especially when it is raining and you can't play in the sand or surf. 

 Materials:

  • 1 5oz bottle of clear glue
  • 3+ Tablespoons of Liquid Starch
  • 1 Tablespoons water
  • 2 drops of turquoise or blue food coloring. 
  • Glitter

 Procedure:

     1. First, mix all the glue, 3 tbs. of liquid starch, and water together. Then add the  food coloring and glitter. Mix well. 

     2. Mix and knead, checking consistency and balancing with more glue or more   liquid starch as you go.  

    3. After you have a cohesive slime you can store in a  plastic zip lock bag or jar. Store in a refrigerator.

Galactic Slime

If you want to give your slime a "Galaxy" look and feel, then this is the recipe. The consistency here is much better than some of the other slime or Gak recipes.

You can create galaxy colors by making small batches of black, turquoise, violet and white/silver using the following proportions. 

MATERIALS:

• 1 bottle of Elmer’s clear school glue. (5oz)
• 1⁄2 - 3⁄4 cup of Sta-Flo liquid starch. (Walmart)
• Liquid watercolors (Amazon) Use several squirts until you achieve 
the desired results. Food coloring works too.
• Fine glitter in a variety of colors.

In a bowl, place glue watercolor and glitter. Mix well.

Then start adding the starch in small amounts. Mix well each time until the starch is fully incorporated.

You will then need to use your hands to knead the starch like you are making bread. You will most likely not use all of the starch. Too much starch and the slime will not be as stretchy as you would like. So, add small amounts at a time. Do a stretch test after each amount of starch is added.

The Science Involved

Slime is what chemists refer to as a cross-linked polymer.  Water acts as a bridge linking the glue to the sodium Tetraborate. The result is a shimmery fluid polymer that is 97% water. It is actually an endothermic reaction (gets cold in your hands).

To make a bunch of the Borax solution, mix 1 level tablespoon of the Borax powder to one 2-liter bottle of water, cap and shake like crazy!

Chemists

Chemists are scientists who like to mix things! They study what things are made of, what properties things have, and how things react together. As you can see (or feel) chemists can have a lot of fun! 

For more chemistry fun, check out our Extreme Radical Reaction STEM Box.

 




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