In this chemistry science experiment we will make the best slime ever! This slime is just like the
real commercial grade slime sold in stores. We can color the slime however we want and make
enough for one person or an entire group. In the process we will have some good old science fun
and learn about polymers and how chains of molecules cross link together. To do this will use
polyvinyl alcohol and borax.

Materials To Make Real Commercial Grade Slime

  • Polyvinyl Alcohol Powder (PVA)
  • Distilled Water
  • Borax (get from supermarket in laundry cleaning area)
  • Food Coloring
  • Crock Pot Cooker
  • Large Metal Spoon
  • Several Empty 1 Liter Plastic Water Bottles
  • Gram Scale (I use a cheap little hanging scale)
  • Measuring Spoons and Cups
  • Wood Popsicle Sticks
  • Small Disposable Plastic Cups
  • Small Ziplock Bags
  • Funnel

Watch The Making Commercial Grade Slime Video:

Process to Make Real Commercial Grade Slime: (for larger batches double to measurements)

1) First measure out 40 grams of Polyvinyl Alcohol (PVA). I usually weigh a empty plastic bag on
the gram scale first. Then scoop in the Polyvinyl Alcohol into the bag until I have added 40 grams of
powder to the original weight of the bag. We will use the PVA powder to make "Solution A"

2) To make "Solution A" pour one liter of distilled water into the crock pot and turn it onto high (I use
an old crock pot that is dedicated to science projects. It gets messy and you may not want to make
chili in this crock pot after whipping up a batch of oozing slime).

3) After adding the distilled water and setting the crock pot to high, pour in the 40 grams of Polyvinyl
Alcohol powder. Use the metal spoon to stir it up a bit. Now put the lid on the crock pot and let it
heat up. Come back every 10 minutes or so, remove the lid, and stir with the metal spoon. Repeat
this process unit all of the Polyvinyl Alcohol powder has been dissolved into the water creating a
saturated solution. It may 45 minutes or longer to dissolve all the PVA into the water. Keep stirring.
In the end it will look just like water and you will see no powder in the crock pot. Once its dissolved,
turn the crock pot off and let it cool off (really let it cool off this stuff gets real hot and will burn you
bigtime if you don't).

4) While the Polyvinyl Alcohol solution is cooling start making "Solution B". The prep for this is very
easy. Weight out 40 grams of the Borax. I like to toss the 40 grams of Borax into a blender to get
the powder as fine as possible. Next take one of the empty 1 liter plastic bottles and fill almost to
the top with distilled water. Pour in the 40 grams of Borax powder. Put the cap on the plastic bottle.
Shake, shake, shake, and keep shaking until the Borax powder dissolves into the distilled water
creating another saturated solution (you should be able to get almost all of it to dissolve. It's ok if
not every spec does). But shake until no more will dissolve! Then fill the rest of the bottle to the top
with distilled water, cap and re-shake. Take a marker and label the bottle "Solution B - Borax".

5) After and hour or so the Polyvinyl Alcohol in the crock pot should be cool enough to handle
without burning yourself. Use the funnel and another empty 1 liter plastic bottle to pour the PVA
solution from the crock pot into the bottle. Use a marker to label the bottle "Solution A - PVA"

6) Now pick the color you want your slime to be. I usually make a triple batch. Then fill three one
liter bottles with "Solution A - PVA). That way I can have color selection for the kids. Get out the food
coloring and drop one or two drops into the 1 liter bottle, cap it and shake. Color to your desired
effect!. Don't put too much food coloring in from the start or it becomes too dark. Better to start with
a drop or two and add it slowly. I like the classic green, red and blue.

7) Now your ready to mix up a batch of slime! Get out the measuring cups and pour 2 ounces of
"Solution A - PVA" into a plastic cup. Give the "Solution B - Borax" a final shake up, then pour a cap-
full of the Borax solution. Give the kids a wood popsicle stick. Have the kids pour the cap-full of
"Solution B - Borax into the plastic cup with the 2 onces of "Solution A - PVA".  

8) Instruct them to start stirring it up like crazy. I like to do the mixing on the lawn! After about 30
seconds of very hard and rapid stirring with the sticks - you will have made some awesome slime.
Parents can help the smaller kids stir.

9) Now comes the fun part. Have the kids remove the slime from the cup and start playing! Notice
that the slime has properties of both a solid and liquid. When rolled into a ball it appears to be a
solid. If you pinch the ball with two fingers and hold it in the air for about 15 seconds it acts more
like a liquid and begins to stretch and run. Roll into a ball and put into a zip lock bag and leave it for
a few minutes and it becomes flat like water and paper.

10) Give each child a ziplock bag for storage. You can put it in the refrigerator to keep it for a while.  

The Science Behind Making Commercial Grade Slime

There is something just magic about slime. Mixing two completely different liquids together into
something that oozes, creeps and goozes is just plain fun! Its great for school science and parties
of all types. Slime is a Polymer. Polymers are made up of many many molecules all strung
together to form really long chains. It results in a thick, syrupy, gel like appearance. When Borax is
added to the Slime Solution, chains of Slime (Polyvinyl Alcohol) molecules cross - link together to
form a viscoelastic gel. The cross linking is weak, so the links continually form and break under
the weight of the gel, or with handling. Leave a ball of the slime on a flat surface, and it slowly
flattens out as the molecular chains slide over each other, rearrange themselves and reconnect. If
you pull suddenly on the material, it snaps. If you hang it by 2 fingers it stretches. Think of it like
this. The PVA solution is millions of individual single molecules. Kinda like if you dump out a box
full of paperclips onto a table (each paperclip is one molecule). If you start taking single paperclips
and attaching or linking them together to can make a long chain. This this the same thing that
happens when we add the Borax solution to the PVA solution. It makes all of the individual PVA
molecules cross-link into long PVA chains.

Slime is unique because it has qualities of both a solid and a liquid.

•        It can take the shape of its containers like a liquid does, yet you can hold it in your hand and
pick it up like a solid.

•        As you might know, solid molecules are tight together, liquid molecules spread out and break
apart (drops)

•        POLYMER molecules CHAIN themselves together (they can stretch and bend like chains)
and that makes them special.

•        Jell-O, rubber bands, plastic soda bottles, plastic spoons, zip lock bags, sneaker soles, even
gum are all forms of polymers.
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