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Find out how one simple and cheap ingredient can create so many different and exciting messy play activities

Find out how one simple and cheap ingredient can create so many different and exciting messy play activities

The wonder of gloop

What is it?

We call it GLOOP, the American’s call it OOBLECK, simply put it is cornflour and water but either way it is great fun and so easy to do at home if you are looking for a simple messy play idea.

How do I make it?

Pour about a third of a cup of water over one cup on cornflour in a plastic container and mix with a spoon.

What is it like?

It looks very watery, and on the top it it BUT put your fingers onto the bottom and you will find a thick, heavy consistency which you could liken to custard. If you scoop some up you will find you can squeeze it in a fist BUT loosen your grip and it will slide through your fingers with ease! Kids and adults find it fascinating – me included!

What can I add to it?

Once you are happy with your basic mix there are so many different things to add to it to make it more fun, here are my top 5 suggestions;

  1. Paint, plop different colours in and let children mix them together
  2. Coloured ice, it makes great swirls and can lead to great discussions about temperatures
  3. Glitter, why not? Which child doesn’t absolutely love glitter? Maybe even glitter and black paint, the night sky re-imagined perhaps!
  4. Washing up liquid = bubbly gloop
  5. Sand, this make a very strange texture and a quicksand effect

How can I make it ‘home friendly’?

When it comes to messy play at home we totally understand that it needs to be quick and simple to clear away. Here are a couple of tips to make gloop messy play simpler and quicker to clear away;

Use the kitchen sink; grab an old bowl or baking tray, pop it straight in the sink and let your little ones play happily (with the help of a stool if height is an issue). Hose it down with the tap when they have finished.

Use the bath; same rules as above apply but lots more room to explore plus bath toys, plastic animals or kitchen utensils can be thrown in too. Everyone and everything can be washed afterwards.

Go outdoors; often easier said than done with Irish weather but on the grass or patio can really cut down on stress about mess.

Gloop, in our experience, so it is great for use in messy play. I can sometimes leave a chalky texture behind but a couple of wipes will sort that out.

Give it a go, then please let us know what you think…….

Written by Esther Andrews, founder of Messy Hands Ltd.

Messy Hands