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February 18, 2015 Slime Recipes: Kid Tested, Teacher Approved By Meghan Everette
Grades PreK–K, 1–2, 3–5, 6–8

    Classic Oobleck is always a hit in my classroom. From amazed first graders to scientifically-minded adult learners, you can’t go wrong with a tub full of ooze. I wanted some more slime time in my room, but a quick Internet search gave me more recipes than I could ever use. Which ones are good? Which ones are duds? My kitchen at home quickly turned into a science lab where my two kids and I tested out a variety of the “best" slime recipes. Read on to find out which ones are classroom-worthy and which ones are a big pile of yuck!

    Classroom connection: We quickly decided that the kid approval rating and the teacher approval rating were not the same. I was concerned with clean up, while the kids were concerned with the ooze-factor. We made simple check sheets to test each slime. This could easily be replicated in a classroom, allowing different groups to each mix a batch and then test for elasticity, viscosity, smell, and any other pertinent categories. Tie in a lesson on descriptive adjectives, figure out how to best measure the ingredients and the final concoctions, and write about slime that takes on a life of its own. A few other ways to use slime in the classroom include:

    • Compare and contrast slime in writing
    • Measure properties of objects
    • Introduce the properties of polymers
    • Bend, twist, and sculpt spelling words
    • Connect to Bartholomew and the Oobleck
    •  Explore semi-intelligent slime mold
    • Discuss properties of materials
    • Practice color mixing and color theory
    • Learn translucent, opaque, and transparent vocabulary firsthand
    • Engineer new slime recipes for the most bouncy, oozy, or stretchy concoction

    Slime in the classroom


    Slime: Classic Borax Slime

    Kid Rating: A

    We made different batches and sometimes the slime broke apart easier than others. We think it had to do with how much Borax we dissolved in the water. One batch was like hard-boiled eggs, but another was smooth and slimy.

    Teacher Rating: A

    The slime is easy-to-make, with ingredients readily available in the classroom. The downside is the large amount of glue needed and how inconsistent the batches come out. Overall, it was simple to make and can cleaned up easily. The best part is this slime serves as a base for many other concoctions.

    Classic borax slime Borax slime



    Slime: "Oobleck" or "Gak"

    Kid Rating: A+

    This is the coolest slime ever! You can cut it and pound on it like a solid, but if you pick it up it melts. It is so cool! You can put food coloring in it too. The only bad part was that it dried out pretty quickly.

    Teacher Rating: A

    I’m withholding the plus because this stuff is messy. I love how students have to decide if it is a solid or a liquid (it’s actually a non-Newtonian liquid) with serious science behind it. It has really fun properties, and despite the messy factor, cleans up easily with water. The ingredients are also very cheap, which is a bonus.

    Oobleck Slime Oobleck



    Slime: Borax-free Slime

    Kid Rating: C

    This stuff is really sticky. It would be neat to use for slime on a movie set, but not to play with.

    Teacher Rating: D

    The recipe has to be cooked on a stove, which wouldn’t work well for the classroom. I couldn’t get the recipe to be solid enough or liquid enough, so I just had to wing it, adding water and flour. The slime wouldn’t last long, given the natural ingredients, but I’d never let this messy stuff in the classroom anyway! It reminded me of old flour-paste recipes that would stick anything together when dry.

    Borax free slime Non borax slime



    Slime: "Silly Putty" Slime

    Kid Rating: A

    This is the best slime for being slimy. It oozes and slides well, but it sticks together enough too. It doesn’t stick to your hands, and you can dye it colors.

    Teacher Rating: A

    This slime is nothing like Silly Putty (as the name indicates) but is a really great consistency. It was easy to make and easy to clean. The supplies would be easy to have in the classroom and it formed simply without a lot of work.

    Silly Putty Slime Silly putty slime



    Slime: Yummy Slime

    Kid Rating: B-

    The slime was really yummy, but it was way too sticky. I’d like it if I could just eat it!

    Teacher Rating: D-

    This was a big fail. The mixture is more expensive than the others, it cooks at a high temperature on the stove, and the result was seriously sticky. It took forever to clean up. The only positive here is the caramel taste.

    Yummy slime Yummy slime



    Slime: "Flubber"/Edible Blood Slime

    Kid Rating: F

    It never turned into slime so I couldn’t play with it!

    Teacher Rating: F

    I found recipes calling this Flubber and blood slime (when dyed red). I couldn’t get it to solidify, but it might be that our soluble fiber said it was a “non-thickening formula.” In any case, we ended up with red liquid, and even if it worked, the recipe is expensive and requires a microwave.

    Flubber Slime Flubber slime



    Slime: Electroactive Slime

    Kid Rating: D

    This made a gooey slime, but it smelled funny and it didn’t do anything.

    Teacher Rating: F

    The slime is supposed to move when you move a charged piece of Styrofoam near it. You have to chill the mixture in a refrigerator (not classroom convenient) and the oil in the recipe invites a messy disaster. Even though we followed directions twice, we were unable to make a slime that moved.

    Electroactive Slime Electroreactive slime



    Slime: Glow in the Dark Slime

    Kid Rating: A+

    This was easy to make and it really glowed in the dark! The slime felt good and didn’t stick to your hands. It smelled a little like paint.

    Teacher Rating: A+

    If you want to impress the kids, this is the one. The cost is slightly higher because you need to either have zinc sulfide or glow in the dark paint to make it shine. It mixed together easily, much like the Borax slime, and was glowing in just a minute after mixing.

    Glow in the dark slime Glow in the dark slime



    Slime Additions

    By far the most exciting experiment we conducted was adding to the classic slime recipe. Water gel beads (found in floral sections) can go in Borax slime and will expand. We used colored beads with clear glue for the best results. We also found out that shaving cream can be added to any slime to turn it poufy. Our best slime came from regular Borax slime, food coloring, and shaving cream. Most Borax slime could hold anything we stuck to it, including glitter or trinkets. "Floam" can be created by adding polystyrene beads to slime. Using clear glue was our favorite, because we could see everything. Even food coloring was translucent with the clear glue mix.


    Fairy slime Shaving cream slime Glitter slime


    Whether you need a fun activity to jumpstart tired brains, or you tie in a serious science objective, slime captures the attention of every kid in the room. Try out all the recipes and have students rank them for themselves, or take our word on the best slime in town. Either way, fun and learning will go hand in hand.


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