Lemonade Oobleck – The Perfect Summer Science Experiment
If there is one thing that always makes me think of summer, it’s Lemonade. And one of our favourite activities we love to do outdoors? Oobleck! Taking Oobleck outside into the sunshine and letting kids enjoy the messy, science fun is the perfect way to spend a summer day. And this Lemonade Oobleck recipe smells AMAZING!
LEMONADE OOBLECK RECIPE
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I love it when the air is warm and we can race out of the house barefoot. Most of the year here in Canada leaving the house is a 30 minute ordeal putting on layers and layers of clothing, then heading outside where the air literally “hurts your face”. So when those temperatures finally start to change and we can head outside, it’s magical!
And nothing screams summer like Lemonade.
We’ve done a couple of activities with Lemons in the past, including building a Lemon battery and creating gorgeous rainbow Lemon Volcanoes. Both of those activities were great indoor activities. Now we want to celebrate summer and get outside!
The solution? Lemonade Oobleck for outdoor, messy, sensory, science fun! Guaranteed to have your kids outside, playing and having fun for hours.
What is Oobleck?
Oobleck is a non-Newtonian Fluid that gets it’s name from a Dr. Seuss book Bartholomew and the Oobleck.
Newtonian Fluid Dynamics state that liquids will move in a predictable flow and pattern. Think of water or syrup, whether you pour them out of a cup or squish them in your hands, they have a predictable, consistent pattern of movement.
Non-Newtonian Fluids break all the rules when it comes of Fluid Dynamics. Instead of flowing predictably, Oobleck becomes solid under pressure, becoming a play dough like consistency. Some of our Oobleck recipes get so hard under pressure I have broken finger nails playing with them!
But once you release the pressure and stop squishing Oobleck, it flows like regular liquid.
Throw a ball of Oobleck and it solidifies on impact before liquefying.
Try to slap Oobleck and it is like hitting a wall. But press down slowly and your hand will sink.
You can even walk on Oobleck!
Oobleck is completely fascinating and there are so many different ways you can use it in your lessons. We have done Oobleck chemistry experiments. One of our favourites was making it change colours in response to pH changes or making it glow in the dark. We have frozen it, we have used it in STEM projects, in Egg Drop Challenges, and we have used it in games. We even did a big science fair project exploring many different Oobleck recipes to find the perfect one.
And the results shocked us!
But this time we wanted to just get outside and have some messy Oobleck fun. So today we are making this wonderfully fragrant, fun Lemonade Oobleck Recipe. Oobleck is fascinating and uses items you already have in your kitchen.
HOW TO MAKE LEMONADE OOBLECK
Making Lemonade Oobleck is soooo easy! If you are doing this outside I recommend making it in a big bowl, bin or bucket so the kids can really play and explore it.
Cornstarch (or one of the many other ingredients we tested successfully!)
Lemon slices (optional)
Yellow food dye
That’s it! And do you see something special here? Oobleck is completely non-toxic and taste safe. I wouldn’t think it tastes great and would not recommend eating it, but if your younger kids explore their senses with a little taste of the Oobleck, it’s all items from the kitchen.
Check out our Lemonade Oobleck video
MAKING LEMONADE OOBLECK
The ratio when using cornstarch to make Oobleck is approximately 2 : 1. If you are using Tapioca, Arrowroot, Baby Powder or our favourite, Potato Starch, the ratios may vary slightly. Click the links to find out what ratios worked best in our testing if you are using one of these alternate ingredients.
It’s best to make the Oobleck right in the container or bowl you are going to use.
Add 2 cups of cornstarch and 1 cup of lemonade, plus a few drops of yellow food colouring if desired. Start mixing. Right away you will notice that it becomes solid and it takes a bit of work to get it really well mixed. Keep mixing and working it together until it is completely combined.
If you find it is a bit too watery, add a bit more cornstarch. If you find it is a bit too thick and hard, add a bit more lemonade. Then mix well. A little goes a long way, so be cautious.
We enjoyed adding some fresh slices of lemons to our Lemonade Oobleck, it really added to their exploration and play time, plus was a wonderful sensory addition. And the scent, oh boy does this Oobleck smell like a fresh summer day!
MORE OUTDOOR SCIENCE
The perfect summer recipe for messy science fun!
- 2 cups Cornstarch
- 1 cup lemonade
- 6 drops yellow food colouring
Add cornstarch and lemonade to a large bowl. Mix well with your hands until it is completely combined. It will become solid under pressure, and liquefy when there is no pressure. This is a non-Newtonian fluid!
Add some sliced lemons and set it outside for the kids to play and learn this summer! It's non-toxic, easy and messy fun!