The Goo That Keeps Gooing!

It looks awesome, feels gooey and we all get mesmerized by its ability to stretch, gather, stick. We made some amaze goo at our live camp this summer and though it’s a simple mix it was one of our biggest hits. Below is TinkingTechy’s formula for how to make slime with glue and a few other easy-to-find supplies*.

*Some of the following are affiliate links. We make a small % when you purchase via our Amazon links. (Which really helps us fund supplies for upcoming projects!)

What You'll Need

Clear Glue  /  Large Bowl  /  Borax  /  Water

Food Coloring  /  Measuring Cup  /  Teaspoon

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How To Make Slime

1. Measure out 1 cup of water and mix in ½ teaspoon of Borax until it is fully dissolved

2. In the large bowl, empty out one 5 oz. bottle of clear glue and mix in a ½ cup of water

3.Add your food color to the glue and water mixture in the large bowl

4. Combine both mixtures in the large bowl

5. Use your hands to thoroughly blend the slime to an even consistency

6. Remove slime from bowl and have fun!

7. When done, place in a resealable baggy for safekeeping

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How It Works + Science Principles Behind It

To understand what slime is, it is important to examine the theories of Isaac Newton (1642–1727). He made many revolutionary discoveries in the fields of mathematics, motion, and gravity. Newton also did work with fluids. Slime is a fluid. One way to describe a fluid is be its resistance to flow, or viscosity. While working in his lab, Newton observed that the viscosity of fluids was affected by temperature. If a fluid is heated, it tends to become less viscous (flowing easily), and if cooled, it tends to become more viscous (flowing slowly). Slime is very viscous (or has a high viscosity).

Slime and some others liquids viscosity can be affected by factors in addition to temperature. These types of liquids are called non-Newtonian fluids. Slime’s viscosity is can be affected by stresses such as squeezing, stirring, agitating, or applying pressure to it. When slime is pulled apart quickly or squeezed, it feels solid and more viscous. When you stop squeezing and the slime is not under stress, it is less viscous and feels more liquidy.

Another example of a non-Newtonian fluid is the synovial fluid in our joints. Normally this fluid is not very viscous, allowing the joints to move freely. However, a sudden stress to these joints, such as from a twist or a blow, will cause this fluid to suddenly become much more viscous cushioning the joint preventing injury.

Slime Chemistry

Let’s look at the chemistry of slime!

The type of slime that we made involved the addition of a solution of sodium tetraborate decahydrate (Na2B4O7 • 10H2O) or borax, to a solution of white glue and water. White glue is an example of a polymer—it is made of long chains of polyvinyl acetate molecules. These chains slide past one another fairly easily, enabling the glue to flow like a liquid when poured from the bottle. But when the borax is added to the glue, a highly viscous, very resilient type of slime forms. The borate ions link the polyvinyl acetate molecules to each other, making even bigger molecules, and it becomes even more difficult for them to slide past one another.

The result is a tangled mass that we know and love as slime!

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TinkingTechy-InstagramHave you tried making slime?

Maybe have a different formula? We’d love to see it or know how yours turned out. Let us know in the comments below or share your pictures with us on Instagram by using the #makecodetinker tag.

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