by Katie Brazerol
The first theme in our December Fireflies curriculum is Five Super Senses. To celebrate the sense of touch, we will be creating flubber on page 15 of the guide. If you’re interested in making some, follow the steps below. I’ve included pictures so you can see what to expect as the substance cooks. This recipe is for one to two children. Heating time will vary if the recipe is multiplied. The mixture can be heated in a microwave or on top of the stove.
Caution: This activity should be supervised closely. Keep the fiber powder out of the children’s reach when not in use. Only an adult should stir the hot mixture. Allow flubber to cool thoroughly before allowing the children to manipulate it.
What You’ll Need:
- microwave or stove
- large microwave safe bowl (for microwave) OR large pot (for stove)
- Metamucil (or similar soluble fiber powder containing Psyllium)
- food coloring (optional)
- measuring cup
- measuring spoons
- oven mitts
- wooden spoon
Step 1: Add 1 tsp. Metamucil powder (or similar soluble fiber containing Psyllium) to 1 cup water in a large microwave-safe bowl or a large pot. Add a few drops of food coloring, if desired. (I used three drops of blue for my sample. The flubber will take on a dark green or orange color without food coloring, depending on the type of fiber powder you use.) Stir thoroughly, and heat in the microwave for about 4-5 minutes, or until mixture begins to bubble up to the top of the bowl. If using the stove, heat the mixture on medium-high heat until the mixture bubbles for about 5 minutes.
Step 2: Remove the mixture and stir with a wooden spoon. Return to heat source and heat for another 4-5 minutes. Remove again and stir. Repeat this process until the mixture starts to become rubbery. (The more times you heat the substance, the more rubbery the substance will get. If you heat too long, the substance will stick to the sides of the bowl and the children won’t be able to manipulate it well.)
Step 3: Use the wooden spoon to remove the flubber from the bowl onto a plate to cool. Once cool to the touch, manipulate the flubber to make sure there are no hot spots in it. Once it’s cool, it’s ready for one child to squeeze, squish, and stretch! As the children play with it, talk about how it looks and feels.
Please note: Play can sometimes get messy! As the children play with the flubber, it may begin to separate into little pieces, so you may wish to cover your work surface with a tablecloth. Children will probably need to wash their hands after playing.