Description: Flubber is another great sensory activity for young and old alike. Mamas love it because it is not too messy. And kids love it because it is fun to stretch, mold, roll, and bounce. Flubber has the unique properties of stretching and flowing under low stress and breaking under higher stress. The simple act of pinching, rolling, stretching and pulling of this substance by children is a wonderful tool for fine motor development. Activities like this will make it easier for your child to learn to hold a pencil and write later on. So it is fun and useful all at the same time! How can you beat that?!
1) Unlike feelie goop, flubber is not safe to eat. Be sure to watch children very closely to make sure they don't put it in their mouths. Also, wash hands after handling flubber.
2) Because of the food coloring, flubber may stain carpet or clothes.
3) Do not put flubber in your hair! ;)
- 1 cup of glue (Elmer's seems to work the best)
- 3/4 cup warm water
- 1 Tbsp 20 Mule Team Borox (available in the laundry aisle of the grocery store)
- 2/3 cup cold water
- Food Coloring
- Large Container
- Small Container
- Plastic Tablecloth (or newspapers) to protect workspace
- Tools to explore flubber with (cookie cutters, toy scissors, molds, plastic stacking cups, etc.)
- In a large container mix the warm water and the glue together until smooth.
- In a separate smaller container, mix the borax and the cold water.
- Add a few drops of food coloring to the smaller container.
- Carefully and slowly pour the contents of the smaller container into the larger container.
- Gently lift and and turn the mixture until only about a tablespoon of liquid is left. (Flubber will be sticky for a moment or two.)
- Let excess liquid drip off, and your flubber will be ready!
Lay down a plastic table cloth onto the floor to keep flubber out of the carpet. Introduce the flubber to the children. Explore the substance with the children. Attempt to stretch the material and talk about what happens. Roll the flubber into a small ball with your fingers. Notice how the flubber keeps it safe. Now, try to bounce the ball! Ooze the flubber into the various stacking cups. Use your fingers to stuff the flubber into a mold. Now remove the flubber from the mold and notice how it keeps its shape.
Science behind Flubber:
Like feelie goop, flubber is another example of a non-newtonian substance. (Specifically a maxwell solid.) Maxwell solids are substances that exhibit both elasticity and viscosity. Viscosity simply refers to the resistance of a substance to flow. For example water would have a lower viscosity than molasses or honey.
To read more about the science of flubber, check out this site here.