Making slime with glue

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Here's how to make a handful of slime with a group of small kids, while explaining that sometimes science looks like magic but you can explain the effects.



Per student:


  • Bowl with tepid water
  • 10cc of powdered Borax
  • Food coloring
  • Glitters


Prep: How does it work?

Explain how glue works: on the molecular level glue consists of many short polymers. These polymers are sticky and can connect two surfaces.

Glue is similar to a big pile of tiny steel chains. If you grab one, you're only gonna take out the short chain.

Now imagine throwing a bunch of molecular magnets in this pile of little chains. If you pull out one, you will also pull out a bunch of other chains, in a very slimy manner.

The borax works in a simialr manner as the magnets, it connects the short polymers together to form longer polymers, resulting in the slimy end result of this workshop.

Hands on: let's make this!

Each kid first creates their own mix of ingredients:

  • Put 10cc of glue in the cup
  • Add 10cc of water to the cup
  • Stir to create a glue/water mixture
  • Optionally, add a few drops of food coloring and glitters, by choice

Prepare a water-borax mixture:

  • Prepare a bowl with tepid water (make sure it's not too hot for the kids' hands!)
  • Add 10cc of borax
  • Mix well until the borax crystals are dissolved in the water

Time for slime!

  • Each kid takes turns to turn her glue mixture into slime
  • Dump the contents of the cup into the bowl with borax, the glue immediately turns into slime!
  • Each kid grabs and pulls their slime back out the borax mixture, back in to their cup
  • Playtime!