Oobleck is an extremely fun and fascinating mixture that even adults will play with if they are given a chance. This mixture of water and corn starch creates an interesting half liquid and half solid mixture that is liquid in the bowl and turns into a solid when pressure is applied to it. But is oobleck safe for babies to play with?
Oobleck is a mixture of corn starch and water, and as long as you stick to this original recipe and do not add in anything extra apart from organic colorants like blended blueberries, then the oobleck is perfectly safe for children of all ages to play with as a messy play activity.
Playtime is an excellent way for parents to bond with their children, so why not use a messy play activity that you will both enjoy. In this article, we will go through how to keep oobleck safe for your baby and some fun activities that you can use oobleck in.
Is Oobleck Safe For Babies To Play With?
Oobleck is a fun and exciting mixture that children love to play with, and for a good reason, as it is a scientific marvel that is considered to be both a liquid and a solid at the same time. This can make for an interesting play material that children can safely experiment with, as well as a great sensory stimulant that can help develop the children’s tactile senses as well as their fine motor skills.
As oobleck is made up of water and corn starch, it is extremely safe for babies to play with as both of these ingredients are edible. So, there is no need to worry if your little one tries to eat the oobleck or if they get it in their mouths during the messy play session.
So, oobleck on its own is safe for babies to play with, but there are some cases where this sensory stimulant can be dangerous for babies. For example, adding in other ingredients to the oobleck that some recipes may suggest, like shaving cream to make the oobleck fluffy, are dangerous for your baby to ingest.
These added ingredients should only be added in for older children who will not try and eat the oobleck or who will follow the instructions you give them to not eat it.
For this reason, if you do want to give oobleck to your baby to play within a messy play session, then you should stick to the basic recipe of making oobleck, using only water and corn starch. However, if you do want to add in an extra bit of fun and sensory stimulation for your baby in the messy play session with the oobleck, then you can color the oobleck with some organic food coloring.
Some organic food colorants that you can use for this include beetroot juice for either a red or pink color, or blended up blueberries or strawberries for a nice blue or pink color, and blended up carrots for a bright orange color, just to name a few.
Oobleck is very safe for babies to play with and is a good addition to the messy play bucket or bowl, but what fun activities can you do with oobleck to make the messy play session extra fun for your little ones? Let us go through some activities, so your child gets the most out of the oobleck.
Fun Oobleck Activates For Babies
There are a few methods that you can use to make oobleck play a bit more fun and exciting for your baby. These methods are easy to utilize and create different ‘scenes’ in your messy play bowls.
You can make some rainbow-colored oobleck and pair it with some unicorn or horse toys to create a fantasy messy play oobleck scene bowl. To do this, you need to make oobleck in three to four separate mixing bowls and add a different organic colorant into each bowl.
Once the organic colorant is completely mixed into the oobleck in each mixing bowl, you can now take it to the messy play bowl and pour each colored oobleck in one at a time to create a rainbow effect in the messy play bowl. Now the oobleck is a lovely colorful setting for your child’s messy play.
Oobleck is also a great alternative to mud play as well. You can include the child in the making of this oobleck “mud” if you want to add in an extra activity for them. To do this, you will make your oobleck as normal, but before you mix the water into the corn starch, you will add in some cocoa powder to give the oobleck a nice brown color.
Your child can help with the mixing of the two powders, which is a great motor skills activity. For this oobleck, you also need it to be a bit thicker than normal to get the mud texture, so you need to add in less water. But this will give your child all the fun of playing in the mud, without the mess of actual mud.
Another good oobleck messy play scene is an under the sea oobleck bowl. This is where you color the oobleck blue with organic colorant and pair this oobleck with underwater creature toys, such as whales, dolphins, and fish.
A nice way to add in an extra element to the oobleck is to freeze the oobleck. For this, you will make the oobleck as normal and add in some organic colorant, and then place it into ice cube trays, or even better, some nice molds of different shapes and then place them in the freezer.
This will require a bit more preplanning on your side, but it adds a great and unique element to the oobleck messy play bowl that your children will love, especially on a hot summer’s day, and this also adds to the tactile development of the child as they are experiencing different temperatures in one place and can begin to discern between them.
Just remember that with all activities that are mentioned above, just as with all activities in general that are for children, there needs to be constant supervision by an adult during any messy play activity.
Oobleck is a fun and interesting sensory stimulant for children that can aid in the tactile development of young children. As long as you stick to the original recipe of just water and corn starch and do not add in anything else other than organic colorants, then the oobleck is perfectly safe for children of all ages as these two ingredients are edible.
Oobleck is a great base for any messy play bowl, and your children will absolutely love playing with it, and you yourself might even enjoy it as it is a fascinating scientific marvel. Enjoy your oobleck messy play session!
Article checked by:
Dr Binu George – Consultant General Pediatric
(MBBS, FRCPCH, Dual CCST (UK), Paediatric Neurodisability)
Head Of Department, Child Development Department at
NMC Royal Hospital, Khalifa City, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates