Is it a liquid? Is it a solid? It's magic! ;) This is a fun and messy "Kitchen Science" project for a rainy day -- I can remember making this as a child myself, and mixed some up for Boy#1 a couple weeks ago.
- 2 cups cornstarch
- 1 cup water
- food colouring
Put cornstarch into a bowl. Add the water and food colouring and mix carefully -- it is easiest to use your hands for this part!
Once it is mixed, take some and try rolling it into a ball in your hands -- look what happens when you stop! Try hitting the surface of the mixture in the bowl with a spoon or dropping some into the bowl from above. Grab some in your hands and squeeze it.
So simple, but entertains a curious kid for at least an hour -- priceless on a rainy day!
For older kids, it's a great opportunity to explain the science behind it. Cornstarch is made of lots of long, stringy particles. When you add water, it creates a mixture called a "suspension". It feels solid when you squeeze it because it causes all of those long molecules to line up. When you stop squeezing it, the molecules relax and return to a liquid-like state!
I warn you -- this will make a wicked mess, but it's easy to clean up with water and having the kids busy is worth the little bit of clean-up after the fun has been had. ;)