If you are unfamiliar with these terms then settle in and let's have some fun! Because I am that weird momma that loves all things smooshy, sticky, slimy, runny...you get the drill. My daughter and I decided our goal this summer was to make as much of this crazy stuff and make it as visually appealing and wonderful smelling as possible. Because crazy weird mommas give birth to small crazy fun babies that will go along with their crazy weird ideas. I'm pretty sure that's just science. So here is a list of some of our favorite recipes we've found rocked our socks off and sent us into fits of giggles playing with them. Also, a side note to all my friends, these types of activities are awesome ways to work on fine motor skills, sequencing, math, reading, and amazing social skill and communication opportunities! The amount of language I have gotten doing these activities with my students has always been incredible, even my students who are very low verbally because they have to work harder and tended to use more eye contact and physical cue when participating in these activities.
Goo: This is a recipe coined by my 8-year-old, Lola, and was probably the best smelling of the bunch. You will need;
1 cup shampoo (she chose a coconut smelling brand, which helped give it it's yummy sent!)
2 tsp baking soda Contact Solution (this is to be added as needed to get the consistency you want)
2 bottles of glue (the kind teachers are in dire need for in their classrooms in the fall!)
1 tsp vanilla extract
Food coloring to be used as needed to obtain the color you want.
So we added the glue, shampoo, baking soda, and vanilla in a bowl and mixed with a spatula until mixture combined. Lola then mixed and intermittently squirted the contact solution to the mixture (and used her hands too, that's part of the fun) until the mixture did not stick to her hands or spatula anymore. She then added a few drops of various food coloring and mixed it until she got the light pink color she wanted. To add to the fun we stored it in a recycled bottle from an organic strawberry jam we had on hand. Handy tip: instead of recycling jars and containers (amongst other items I'll blog about later), I wash them out and keep them in a basket for future use for art projects. Another tip is to get some small objects (coins, play figures, scrabble tiles, etc) and bury them in the Goo. This is not only a good fine motor task but also works on an identification of objects and categorizing.
Flubber (is also called Slime sometimes):
What you will need;
1 bottle of glue (same as with the Goo)
You're going to mix 1 tsp of Borax in with 1 cup of water in a bowl, mix and set aside. In another bowl, you'll mix your bottle of glue (can use either clear or white glue) and 1 cup of water and the food coloring of your choice. Stir the mixture a few times and then add your Borax/water mixture in. You'll start to see the consistency change and thicken. This is the point where you and your little guys can start using your hands to mix up the slime and feel the consistency change with your own hands. Some kiddos might find this to be too much to handle so stirring it up with the spoon works just as well. Some variations on this is using clear glue from the market and adding glitter or confetti to make it more visually appealing. Using various small confetti figures can be turned into a fun game of I Spy as well to work on visual identification.
1 cup cornstarch
1 cup baking soda
1/2 cup water
Mix all these ingredients in a bowl, then pour (or spoon) onto a tray and watch your child eyes light up in amazement (and some confusion) by how this mixture is a liquid, wait no it's a solid, nope hold the phone it's a liquid again! This will drip off their little fingers but then solidify as it hits the tray until you scrape it up with your fingers and it liquidizes again, and again, and again!
These are just a few of my favorites I've tried out with many children I've worked with over the years. The possibilities are endless, as are the recipes and the personalized touches you can add. For more great ideas on homemade Goo, Slim, Gak, Flubber, etc. head over to Pinterest and see the thousands of great recipes other Creative Kid Geniuses (AKA Parents and Teachers) have concocted! Above all, make it fun as well as educational and it's a win/win afternoon!