Countryside Elementary School second-grader Addison Gearhart sunk her feet into the watery cornstarch inside a plastic kiddie pool and took a couple steps.
“It felt squishy, and when I walked on it, it was a solid,” she said afterward.
Students participated in a messy experiment in their schoolyard, demonstrating an anomaly when it comes to the properties of matter they learn in second-grade science class.
The substance changes from liquid to solid form when pressure is applied, a transformation students tested by squeezing it in their hands and walking through the pool.
“It will change from a liquid to a solid without temperature,” said Kelly Behrens, a science, technology, engineering and math teacher.
Behrens and art teacher Rachael Ambroso joined forces to teach students about the perplexing substance and show its connections to art and science. Students plopped the ooze on paper to create abstract art by outlining the resulting shapes in crayon to make monsters.
Second-grader Tessa McGowan not only experimented with the ooze, but ended up covered in it, from head to bare toes. “It’s really sticky,” she said.