Slime Time: A Chemical Change By Cam Barker

Summary:

In this experiment, I will be demonstrating how to make slime. This is a fun way of showing a chemical change in action. I will be combining sodium borate with polyvinyl alcohol. After much stirring, the two liquids will form into a gooey, thick and stretchy substance, aptly named, “slime”.

Cross linking in action

Relevant Chemistry Concept:

Making slime is an example of a chemical change. Chemical changes involve chemical reactions and the creation of new products. During a chemical reaction, the atoms within a substance are rearranged into different combinations. The substances used in making slime, sodium borate and polyvinyl alcohol, form together to create a new substance that is slime. The polyvinyl alcohol, which is a polymer, is attracted to the sodium borate which is the cross linker. This attraction links the two molecules to form long chains, and tons of these chains together form the slime.

Materials:

  • Container for mixing (I'll be using a glass measuring cup)
  • Measuring device (I'll be using 2 glass measuring cups - one large and one small)
  • Spoon or stirring stick
  • 3% solution of polyvinyl alcohol
  • 4% solution of sodium borate
  • Dye (optional)
  • Safety glasses
Here are my chemicals used in creating the slime.

Procedure:

When all materials are organized, safety glasses will need to be put on. To ensure proper slime consistency, the ratio of polyvinyl alcohol to sodium borate is 20:1. For the amount I’m making, I will measure out 100mL of 3% polyvinyl alcohol in the measuring cup, which will also serve as my mixing bowl. Next, I will add in a few drops of the pink dye and stir. Next, while continuing to stir, I will slowly add in 5mL of 4% sodium borate. Lastly, I will stir for approximately two minutes as I intermittently check for the substance to obtain the correct consistency of slime.

Finished product!

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