Oobleck Dough

We’re constantly looking for new takes on classic science experiments around here. And this one came about as a little bit of an accident. I had put out a play tray of kitchen supplies like dish soap, baking soda, corn starch, water, food coloring, etc. for my daughter Turns out that when you mix dish soap and corn starch, you can make a different form of oobleck. And keep adding corn starch and you’ll get a totally different form of play dough. This post is all about the fun you can have experimenting with Oobleck Dough. This post contains affiliate links.

Have some messy science fun with this easy to make oobleck dough.Oobleck Dough Recipe

Two ingredients are all you need! Dish soap (I used Dawn) and cornstarch, also known as cornflour.

Oobleck Dough Ingredients

Start with a tablespoon of dish soap and a teaspoon of cornstarch. Mix and explore the consistency of the mixture. Does it flow like a liquid? Is it powdery like cornstarch? Can you stretch it? Break it? Just have fun! Make some oobleck, which is a thick syrupy consistency, but seems to be a solid when you touch it with a lot of force.

Oobleck Left Brain Craft Brain

And then keep adding cornstarch until you make a pliable dough. And add more dish soap if it got too dry. Do I have an exact recipe for you? Ehh, maybe. Approximately two parts cornstarch to one part soap. But really, this project is all about the journey :) Once you have the dough ready, pull out the cookie cutters and tools and start molding! If your designs dry out, you can always add a little soap to them to keep them solid.

Oobleck Dough and Soap Left Brain Craft Brain

Hands-on Independent Fun

This makes a great project for independent play. Set out the containers of soap and cornstarch and let the kiddos have at it. They’ll learn more without specific recipe guidelines. It does get a little messy so be sure to cover your surface. But I’ll admit, once I cleaned up the soap, my table was actually cleaner than when we started!

Stirring Oobleck Left Brain Craft Brain

Pouring Soap Left Brain Craft Brain

The Science of Oobleck

Oobleck is a non-Newtonian fluid, a fancy name for a material that changes viscosity (thickness) with pressure. Give it hard push, it feels solid. Be more gentle, and it flows like a liquid. Oobleck and slime are examples of shear-thickening non-Newtonian fluids, meaning they get thicker with more pressure. Nail polish and ketchup are examples of shear thinning non-Newtonian fluids, meaning they get thinner with pressure.

And there’s always my favorite goop book, the one that inspired it all. Oobleck got its silly name from a Dr. Seuss book called Bartholomew and the Oobleck {affiliate}.  It’s a story about a gooey substance that falls from the sky because the king is bored with normal weather.  And that’s how I got the idea to turn the oobleck into a snow shower over a Christmas tree forest!bartholomew and the oobleck

Love hands-on fun? Check out our absolute favorite non-Newtonian Color Changing Slime!

Heat Sensitive Color Changing Thermochromic Slime Left Brain Craft Brain FB

Love Kitchen Science? You'll love STEAM Kids in the Kitchen!

Looking for some more STEAM inspiration that use can use right now? Instant gratification style? Check out STEAM Kids in the Kitchen: Hands-on Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, & Math Hands-On Recipes and Activities for Kids ebook! It’s packed full of 70+ Bring STEAM learning fun into the kitchen with these hands-on activities and recipes. Learn what makes bread rise, colors change, and how to make an epic pudding model of the Earth.

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Have some messy science fun with this easy to make oobleck dough.
 

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