Gack and other assorted gooey things you can make as experiential, "hands on learning tools."

These are related to the process of change and helping turn Caterpillars into Butterflies:

Basic, Bombproof Gack

Take 2 cups Elmer's Glue mixed in 1.5 cups warm water with food coloring added "to taste!" and combine with a mixture of 1.5 tablespoon Borax mixed in 1 cup hot water.

from The Children's World Learning Center in Charlottesville VA (via Ted Forbes)


50 cc's of cornstarch (2 big tbls) and about 25 ml of water. Remove from cup and knead. Add few drops of water if oobleck is too crumbly.

Glurch 1:

You'll need 45 ml liquid laundry starch, 25 ml white glue and a pinch of salt. Put starch into plastic medicine cup, add salt, stir, add glue and stir. Squeeze out excess starch with fingers. Remove from cup and knead. Add a few grains of salt if too runny.

Glurch 2:

20ml Elmer's white glue mixed in 25ml water; add food coloring as desired, stir well. Stir while adding either enough 4% sodium borate solution (Borax) or liquid Sta-Pruf starch (the blue stuff is the only one that works) until the glurch forms. Pour off excess liquid, then dump glurch onto wax paper for a minute or two. Let students knead glurch and you have it. If the stuff is too sticky, too little borate/starch was used. Hot water dissolves the Borax better.

PVA Slime

To a 4% solution of 25 ml of polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) add a couple of drops of food coloring, then 6-7 ml of saturated (about 4%) borax.

Another fun recipe:

To about 25 ml of white glue (not all brands work equally well) add a drop or two of food coloring and then 12 ml of liquid laundry starch concentrate. After stirring and kneading, this makes something I have seen called "gloop", "oobleck" or "homemade silly putty".

Yet another fun recipe:

To an Amway Home Products product called "Fabric Finish" (25 ml) add the food coloring and about 12ml of the liquid laundry starch concentrate as noted above. This is also a PVA slime although the properties are different from those of #1 above.

Most from an internet discussion with one of the editors of Bob Pike's Newsletter

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