How to Make Plastic Balls

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Plastic balls are toys that kids all over the world can enjoy. Using simple chemistry, a few supplies picked up at the local grocery store and the help of a parent, kids can safely create their bouncing balls right from home. These plastic bouncing balls can be made in a variety of sizes and dyed any color. For kids who are easily bored, a bouncy ball can add a new flair to outdoor activities.

Things You'll Need

  • 2 cups warm water
  • Borax
  • Cornstarch
  • White glue or clear glue
  • Food coloring
  • Measuring spoons
  • Mixing spoon
  • 2 small plastic cups
  • Marking pen
  • Second timer
  • Plastic bag
  • Mark one cup "Borax Solution" and another cup "Ball Mixture" with the marking pen.

  • Add 1/2 tsp. of borax powder with 2 tbsp. of warm water to the Borax Solution cup.

  • Stir the solution until the borax dissolves and add food coloring.

  • Pour 1 tbsp. of glue into the Ball Mixture cup. Add 1/2 tsp. of the borax solution and 1 tbsp. of the cornstarch. Wait 10 to 15 seconds before stirring.

  • Keep stirring until the ball mixture hardens and becomes too thick to continue.

  • Place the partially hardened mixture in your hands and knead the material into the shape of a ball.

Tips & Warnings

  • The ball will be sticky when it is first forming, but will become smooth as it solidifies.
  • Never place the ball or the materials used in making the ball in your mouth.
  • Wash your work area, supplies and hands after you've finished.

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References

  • "Janice VanCleave's 201 Awesome, Magical, Bizarre, & Incredible Experiments"; Janice Pratt VanCleave; 1994
  • "Theo Gray's Mad Science: Experiments You Can Do At Home--But Probably Shouldn't"; Theodore W. Gray; 2009
  • Photo Credit yellow balls and a blue ball image by Ramona smiers from Fotolia.com
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