How to Make a Borax Bouncy Ball
Bouncy balls rebound in response to the amount of force used when they contact hard surfaces. That simply means that a bouncy ball will bounce back at you with about 80 percent of the energy you used when you threw it and bounced it off of something rigid. You may find bouncy balls in vending machines and they are available in discount, grocery and department stores in many colors and designs. You can also make your own bouncy ball using many ingredients you probably already have in your home.
Things You'll Need
- Permanent marker
- 2 disposable plastic cups
- Warm water
- Measuring spoons
- Disposable spoons or craft sticks for stirring
- Food coloring (optional)
- White glue or clear school glue
- Clock or watch with a second hand
- Plastic zip-close bags
Use the permanent marker to label the plastic cups. Write "ball" on one cup and "borax" on the other cup.
Combine 1/2 teaspoon borax with 2 tablespoons warm water in the borax cup and stir it well to dissolve the borax. Add one drop of food coloring at a time, stirring after each addition, until the mixture's shade suits you.
Pour 1 tablespoon glue into the "ball" cup. Add 1/2 teaspoon of the borax mixture to the glue but do not stir the mixture. Add 1 tablespoon of the cornstarch and do not stir. The ingredients will now begin to combine with each other without mixing them. Wait 10 to 15 seconds and then stir the mixture constantly until it thickens to the point that you can no longer stir it.
Scoop the stiffened mixture out of the cup with a spoon and begin kneading it with your hands. Shape the mixture into a ball as you are kneading it. The mixture will be messy and sticky initially, but it will begin to solidify with handling and exposure to air. Once it's no longer sticky, it's ready to bounce.
Wash your hands, work area and all the utensils with warm soapy water. Store the bouncy ball in a sealed plastic bag at room temperature when you are not using it.
- Using white glue will make the ball opaque. To make a translucent ball, use clear school glue.
- Adding extra glue will produce a slimier ball. If you want a ball that can bend and stretch, use more cornstarch. Experiment with different amounts of cornstarch, borax and glue to produce bouncy balls with varying properties.