Our polymer idea is eco-friendly and child-safe polymer clay. We would want all the properties normal polymer clay has such as the ability to hold its shape, its flexibility, softness, and dry hard. Our plan was to take a basic dough recipe (cornstarch + water) but to alter it to fit the properties of polymer clay.
We first started out the basic clay recipe, but it was too hard and not moldable at all. We then decided to add some guar gum to give it an elasticity that is closer to polymer clay.
The process we went through was testing and revising until we got the perfect consistency.
Here is the final recipe:
6 tbs cornstarch
2 tbs guar gum
40 ml water
- Take cornstarch, guar gum and water. Mix
- Heat using microwave (light heat) for 30 seconds with 10 minute intervals
- Knead until dough
When you mix cornstarch, guar gum and water together it forms a frosting like consistency and the water gives the cornstarch and guar gum some room to move around so they can start forming long polymer chains. When you microwave the substance, the cornstarch/guar gum polymers will grab onto each other making them stick together- thus forming the clay.
A problem we encountered is that it cracks when it dries. We used different prototypes and compared them when they dried. The last prototype cracked the least and meets all our expectations.
Here is a picture of our first clay prototype when put through the ‘crack test’ (mentioned above)
Here are pictures of our final prototype
Justice, Lisa. “Corny chemistry.” Corny chemistry – Explorit Science Center. 23 May 2019 <http://www.explorit.org/news/corny-chemistry>.
Our goal for the Polymer Project is to create a polymer clay that is 100% eco-friendly and has the properties of polymer clay. Our target audience are kids or artists who use modeling clay to sculpt or just to use it as a toy.
Polymer clay is the widely known and used modeling clay. Unfortunately, it contains PVC and it is extremely harmful to you and the environment. With our polymer clay (made of cornstarch, guar gum and water) it is 100% environment friendly and also 100% safe.
We use cornstarch and water to make the dough- the base. We added guar gum to give it a bouncy, stretchy and soft texture and to keep the clay from drying too fast.
Heres our first prototype for our eco-friendly clay
“What’s So Bad About Vinyl Plastic (PVC)?” Eco, 24 Sept. 2013, www.eco-novice.com/2013/09/whats-so-bad-about-vinyl-plastic-pvc.html.
In the book The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness, Todd Hewitt is constantly running away from death and chasing after the truth. Todd’s characterization slowly changes throughout the story. The main character is from Prentiss town, a place where everyone could read each other’s minds. A place where people become crazy when the noise gets too much.
Todd may seem like the hero of the story but he surely does not want to be. On page 47 Todd exclaims “No, its not all right. It’s not all right at all.” Todd refuses to leave when Ben and Cillian rush him out of the town purely for his own good. There’s a fighter in Todd but there’s also a softer, kinder side. Almost everybody who meets him knows he isn’t a killer. Even in the fight for his life, Todd didn’t have the guts to kill Aaron- the pastor that wants to kill him. Todd is surely “The boy who can’t kill” (p. 451). In the beginning of the story, when Hewitt finds the hole (Viola) he helped her survive. Viola later becomes a great help and they face the Prentiss town together as one. Todd was brought up with a kind family, Ben and Cillian. After his mother was killed Ben took him in and raised him. Todd has a strong bond with these two people and depends on them mentally throughout the whole story. Lastly, “…if yer the last boy in town, you just have to wait…” (p. 10). Todd is the last boy to become a man (turning 13 years old) and he has prominent cheekbones.
Polymers are molecules that are chemically bonded together to form a long, repeated chain. All polymers start with a base, called the backbone. There are also pendant groups that hang loose or connect chains together. A chemical bond is what holds the atom chains together. In class, we made slime using PVA glue and borax. When borax / laundry detergent is added to the PVA, it changes the position of molecules in a process called cross linking and forms chains- which is the slime.
Synthetic polymers are human-made polymers. Some examples are Nylon and Rubber, yet these are made from natural resources such as tree latex and petroleum oil. To make these natural resources into the polymers, polymerization (combining molecules), heating and spinning, and lastly manufacturing.
Perkins, Sid. “Explainer: What Are Polymers?” Science News for Students, 13 Oct. 2017, www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/article/explainer-what-are-polymers.
“The Science Behind Slime.” Little Bins for Little Hands, 22 Apr. 2019, littlebinsforlittlehands.com/basic-slime-science-homemade-slime-for-kids/.
Here is a model of a polymer