Oobleck...A Solid or a Liquid?

During our science co-op class last week, we transitioned from learning the properties of a liquid to learning the properties of a solid. 

We began with easy substances like cotton balls, toothpicks, and candle wax.  The children tore, broke, and cut these samples. 

Then, we examined oranges, chalk, and cereal.   Allowing the children to cut, smash, squash the substances created a mess, but offered the children plenty of hands on examination of the samples.  Besides, science should be fun and hands on, right?  We did minimize chalk dust by putting the pieces of chalk into baggies prior to the crushing

More challenging substances like shaving cream and toothpaste were observed next. 

Finally, we made oobleck.  It is technically "a type of non-Newtonian fluid called a dilatant." {according to about.com}  The children combined cornstarch and water to create it following this recipe.  We colored the water first with a few drops of food coloring to make the oobleck colorful. 

Afterwards, I read aloud from the Dr. Seuss book, Bartholomew and the Oobleck.  Though I did not read the entire book, the children loved how the kingdom became 'stuck' with oobleck falling from the sky.

To end the class, each child was given an assigned 'scavenger hunt' to be completed at home.  After finding various solids and liquids throughout their own homes, each child will report back to the class next time.


  1. What a cool lesson! I love the oobleck and the scavenger hunt to complete at home. The children in your coop are very lucky to have you as their Science teacher!

    1. Thank you, Marla, you are too kind! Oobleck was something I wanted to include in the study of matter because it is fun and interesting. (Though it can be quite messy to make...of course that might be what makes it so much fun!)


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