This storytime was a mess, mostly in the literal sense, but also a little messy figuratively speaking. Ever have a storytime where things just spontaneously do not go to plan? This was mine.
Our letter was G for Goo! So many things start with S that I did not want to use it.
Snippet the Early Riser by Bethanie Deeny Murguia
Snippet is a cute little patchwork snail whose Circadian rhythms are way off from those of his family. With a little creative thinking, though, maybe he can get them up early to play!
Concepts: Creative thinking. We also talked about why some animals make slime.
Bartholomew and the Oobleck by Dr. Seuss
Yes, I did use this obscenely long book in storytime! As you probably know, it tells the story of a king who messes with the natural order out of his own selfishness and puts his entire kingdom in danger.
Concepts: Contentment in life. The power of “I’m sorry.” Liquids that act solid!
Once upon a time there were five little snails
Gliding along on their slimy trails.
One snail got sleepy and he said, “Oh welllllll…. (yawn it)
I guess I’ll pop back in my shell!”
And so on until no little snails remain, and then:
Once upon a time there were no little snails
Gliding along on their slimy trails.
They’re all sleep so, oh well,
It must be time for us to (do a song and dance/read a book/whatever is next.)
(because glue is slimy, and we used it to make slime)
(because sharks are fish, and fish make a slime coating!)
Slime and Non-Newtonian Fluid (Oobleck)
I used Steve Spangler’s slime recipe.
I already knew how to make the oobleck, and I have known for so long that I’m not sure where I learned. You can find out how to make it from this Instructable.
How It Went:
Oh my gravy. Just slap me if I ever start talking about making slime again.
Okay, so here’s what happened.
I tested the slime a few days before storytime in a small batch. The recipe worked well. However, when I tried to make a bigger batch the morning of storytime, the slime didn’t come together. Instead, stiff clumps formed in the container. I pulled them out, rinsed them, and set them aside in case two clumps of rubbery stuff were all I wound up with. Then I tried a third time, and the mixture turned into slime. Yay! Then I opened the container at the end of storytime, and it was all flubber. I’m still not completely sure what happened. I think part of the problem was the cheap, watery glue I used for the larger batch, and maybe another part of the problem was the difference in humidity and temperature between test day and storytime day. Luckily, it went back to being a little slimier once we took it outside in the heat.
I also had trouble with the oobleck–too wet! However, if you have this problem, do not panic. Just let the oobleck sit for a little while. The cornstarch will sink, and then you can pour the excess water off the top. After I did so, the oobleck was textbook-perfect: dry to the touch, liquid if allowed to relax.
Although the slime made a pain of itself in the making process, it performed beautifully for the kids. I also made 9 oz cup size batches of both our “slimes” so the storytimers could see how it is made. We talked about polymers and how liquids usually work, then we experimented with our slime. Too, too fun! The “flubber” even bounces! In the photos, the white streak in the slime blob is the small batch I made in front of the storytimers. I didn’t add food coloring.
We had wet wipes for everyone, but hands still wound up very sticky. No worries! All of it comes off with a good soap and water scrub.
Even after abridging Dr. Seuss, I still only got two stories into this session. However, since I have all those 5 and 6 year olds, the longer story went over really well. Everyone agreed that Baby Shark is the most fun song we’ve ever done (in the last four weeks)!
Verdict: A giant pain in the you-know, but totally worth it after seeing the kids have so much fun testing out the slime.
This week, we will talk about Rockets and Space!