Saturday, November 3, 2007


Everyone has a Gak-like recipe in their repertoire. This makes a gooey white substance that flows slowly or can shatter if hit fast. It can be molded like a play dough but immediately starts to soften and lose its shape. We pass this recipe out to parents all the time and I couldn't find a copyright statement on the web, so I'm assuming this is free. Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Some activities for Gak include:

- Place the Gak over things with holes on a table, such as slotted spoons, berry baskets, or other objects you can easily wash.
- Use the Gak with plastic knives and cookie cutters to form slowly "melting" shapes.
- Let the Gak settle in a large, shallow pan and let children write on it with markers.
- Let children write on the Gak with markers and then play with it to see what happens to the colors.
- Suspend a holey basket, like a berry basket, from the ceiling above a table. Let the children cut the Gak with scissors as it slowly droops to the table.
- Have the children help make Gak. You mix the Borax into the warm water and let the children pour small amounts of it in the glue mixture. Give each child the lump they created to play with on a tray.
- Let kids add glitter or small glitter shapes to watch where they go as the Gak is moved around.

2 cups Elmer's glue
1 1/2 cups cool water
1 tbsp Borax
1 cup warm water
food coloring or liquid water color

Mix the glue and cool water in a large bowl. Dissolve the Borax into the warm water in a measuring cup. If you want to color the Gak add the coloring to the Borax mixture. Add the dissolved Borax to the glue mixture 1/3 of a cup at a time. Stir with each addition, pulling out the lumps as they form. Work in the excess liquid with your hands and then knead into a lump. Store in a sealed container.

- Use Elmer's glue. I've made this with other brands and it's a bit stinky. If you plan to make this up a few days before you use it and it sits in a container, the non-Elmer's version really smells. Even some kids won't go near it.
- The color mostly stays with the warm water, so you can get multiple colors out of one batch if you separate the Borax solution into as many parts as you want colors. Do your lightest color first.
- Advise parents to wash Gak-y clothing as soon as possible. While it is possible to get set-in Gak out with muliple washings, or freezing and picking, it's a whole lot easier to clean it up front. Same goes for teachers. :)

1 comment:

  1. I just wanted to let you know that I linked to this post and I put the recipe to make Gak on my blog. I used your idea to use berry baskets, thanks a lot!