As a child, I remember playing with Gloop and actually spending hours just running it through my fingers. It’s an amazing sensory experience because it looks like a liquid on a surface, yet when you touch it, it’s solid. You can drip from a spoon and catch it in your hand, then watch as it turns into a liquid again with the heat from your fingers. It’s a great introduction to sensory/ messy play and it’s so cheap and easy to make too. All you need to make green Gloop is:
- A plastic bowl and a spoon
- Food colouring
Just mix the ingredients together- as much or as little as you like.
I did wonder how the pre-schooler would react to Gloop, especially since he isn’t so keen on ‘dirty’ messy play. To make him feel comfortable, I left some spoons inside the Tuff Spot so that he could use these instead of his fingers if he wanted to (which he did). We also used some cookie cutters and a burger press (!) to make shapes in the Gloop- the kids were amazed to see the Gloop take on the shape of the cutters, and then just as quickly the shapes were lost as the mixture returned to a liquid state.
The Gloop went down well, and actually stored overnight with clingfilm over the top of the bowl so that we could use it again. We also made some red Gloop and The Big One experimented with mixing the two colours together. She also had a play with some extra water and when we ran out of cornflour, she added some plain flour to the mix. This left us with a really thick Gloop of an entirely different consistency, which she spent a time playing with too.
The pre-schooler wasn’t keen, truth be told. He loved the idea of the Gloop and he was happy to poke it around with a spoon, but when it came to dipping his fingers in, he was really out of his comfort zone.
The baby? She loved it.
She wasted no time getting stuck in so I used the opportunity to highlight key words such as cold, slimy, squidgy, and funny. She spent a long time exploring the feel of the Gloop under her fingers, she had a taste (yuk!) and she also got right into the Tuff Spot to have a good look. I’m hoping next time, the pre-schooler plucks up the courage to explore it a little further, but if he doesn’t I will take the advice of a fellow blogger and I will pop some into a ziplock bag for him to play with instead!
I was keen to explain to The Big One why the Gloop behaves as it does, so we googled it, and came across a site called Exploratorium. This post explains what happens and why.