If you've made oobleck at home, you know how cool and mysterious it is - this substance (known as a non-Newtonian fluid) that is liquid until your try to touch it!
If you haven't made oobleck at home, you are in for a treat. You'll probably think this is a trick, but it isn't! Oobleck is so simple to make, but has the strangest physical properties. It's gooey and liquid until you exert force on it, like stirring it or squeezing it, and then suddenly it's a solid! How cool! Can it get any cooler?
The creators of an amazing YouTube channel called King of Random experimented with creating fizzy oobleck, and to everyone's surprise, it worked!
What You Will Need
food colouring (if desired)
The focus today is on discussion the properties of liquids and solids, and comparing them. Before you start, brainstorm some characteristics of solids. Now brainstorm some characteristics of liquids. Are there some characteristics both have? Be sure to focus on comparing and contrasting liquids and solids today while playing with the oobleck. How does it behave differently when in it's liquid form than in it's solid? When does this change happen? etc. Check out more discussion questions for after the activity below the video.
This channel is fantastic for kid-friendly content full of science experiments, answering questions you never knew you had. Check out more of their videos for more sciencey fun!
Questions and Activities
Create your own oobleck! The ratio is usually 1 part water to 1.5-2 parts corn starch. Simply swap out the water for vinegar, as seen in the video.
Was it solid, liquid, or both? How did it’s liquid-like and solid-like properties correspond to how quickly or slowly you moved the oobleck?
Brainstorm some everyday examples of “non-Newtonian” fluids. (ex. ketchup, silly putty)
Try to think of some useful applications for a non-Newtonian fluids like oobleck. (check out a cool example here)
More about non-Newtonian fluids
Full lesson plan about oobleck
Grade 1 Understanding Structures and Mechanisms: 2.3 investigate, through experimentation, the properties of various materials
Grade 2 Understanding Matter and Energy: 2.2 investigate the properties of liquids (e.g., conduct experiments to compare the rate at which different liquids flow) and solids; 3.2 describe the properties of solids (e.g., they maintain their shape and cannot be poured) and liquids (e.g., they take the shape of the container they are in and can be poured)