Making Oobleck

This summer has flown by… I can’t believe July is almost over already! I have been staying pretty busy teaching summer school for a group of soon-to-be-second graders.  I only have 11 kids to handle, but it’s been a great opportunity to test out classroom management and organization methods that I didn’t get to change in my student teaching placement. Planning and delivering lessons and activities with zero backup has been interesting, too… but in the best way! Teaching is NEVER boring when you’re in the classroom!

The theme this year is Dr. Seuss, or more specifically, “Oh, the Places You’ll Go!”.  It’s a Pinterest dream, so there are oodles of resources and free activities available that I drew inspiration from. I want to share one of my favorite activities that we did during the June session!

First, we read “Bartholomew and the Oobleck,” which is such a strangely funny story. My kids loved the creepy, chanting wizards best! You can watch an abridged read-aloud version below.

Then, it was time to get messy with making our own Oobleck! (I got the recipe from this blog!)

We did this activity combined with the other second grade class, so there were 22 kiddos total. We split them up into groups of three or four, and gave each group their own supplies:

  • 1 large mixing bowl
  • 1 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 4-5 drops green food coloring
    • Side note: some mommy bloggers may tell you to avoid food coloring. I say blaze onward… it washes out!

Once the supplies were dispersed, all I had to do was stand back and watch! (And laugh. Some reactions were priceless.) The kids mixed everything up on their own, and they loved playing with the ooey gooey mess. It’s the weirdest stuff- if you try to squeeze it or apply any pressure, it becomes a solid, but the second you let go, it’s a runny liquid! I talked to the kids in their small groups to make sure they could recognize and identify the difference between a solid and liquid.

Some kids totally loved this experiment, and others were completely grossed out- either way, they had fun watching each other try to handle the Oobleck! It was such a fun extension activity, and only took 20 minutes from beginning to end. Summer school success!

Don’t worry- as messy as it is, oobleck washes right off with a little water!
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