My boys love slime! (And really, so do I!) Whether it’s playing the part of radioactive sludge engulfing their action figures, an alien blob, or just an enjoyable home gym for their fingers, one batch can keep them engaged for hours.
Making slime couldn’t get any easier than this quick individual batch method. It’s so simple and fast, you can help your kids mix it up at the counter right before starting dinner, and I’d be willing to bet they’ll still be playing there when you’re ready call them to the table.
So here’s the 4-1-1. 4 Tablespoons Water – 1 Tablespoon School Glue – 1 Heaping Tablespoon Borax.
Have each child hold a sandwich size ziplock baggie. (Be sure to let the air out completely before sealing each time to avoid any popping while the kiddos knead the ingredients.) To each baggie, add the water and the glue. Have the children work these two ingredients together by smooshing the baggies.
This is also a good time to add your color. If you’re working with a small group, it’s fun to let them each choose their own colors, but if you have a larger group, it may be easier to add the color directly to the water in a large cup or bowl, and then measure each batch’s water from that mix. Food coloring will work, but is more likely to come off onto little hands and more likely to stain. I prefer to use washable liquid watercolors because they’re just so much more vibrant and kid-friendly.
Once the water and glue are well mixed, add the Borax. (Borax can be found in the laundry section of the store. It’s well worth the few dollars you’ll spend on it. And a great opportunity for environmental print using the letter X — with its standard phonetic sound!) Seal and mix the baggie again. You’ll be able to feel the mixture begin to coagulate. Keep mixing it until it begins to feel like it has an even consistency.
It should be easy to peel the slime from the sides of the baggie when it’s ready. You may want to continue kneading it a bit after removing it to get all the Borax mixed in.
If the slime is too wet, work in a little more Borax. If it’s too stiff, add a little more water. It tends to firm up a bit simply by playing with it as well.
This slime is referred to as a Non-Newtonian Fluid, meaning its consistency and flow is unique, changing in response to movement or force. So if you simply hold it in your hand or set it on the counter, it flows like a liquid. But if you roll it into a ball or toss it from one hand to the other, it feels and acts like a solid. You can even break it or cut it with scissors like a solid. It’s a fun substance to use as you explore the different states of matter.
In addition to simply enjoying it as a fun sensory experience, you could also use this as an extension activity with Dr. Seuss’s Bartholomew and the Oobleck, as a fun Halloween activity, or as a fun “potions class” for your little Harry Potter fans.
As long as you use washable coloring, the slime cleans off of hands and out of clothes easily with warm water. Keep the slime stored in an air-tight container and it should be reusable for a few days. That should buy you enough time to get a few dinners made. That is if you can keep yourself from playing with this brilliantly gooey stuff!
*See the comments section for troubleshooting tips!*