Marbled Oobleck Sensory Art Activity

 Make some beautiful marbled patterns in goop and lift off prints to make gorgeous, patterned art work with kids! A lovely sensory rich art investigation for all ages to enjoy. Marbled Patterns in GakWe investigated with adding colouring to Oobleck to see what would happen as the mixture changed from solid to liquid and back again. The results were beautiful and pieces of art in their own right, and absolutely mesmerising to watch as the colours changed and developed all by themselves, almost dancing through the mixture!

To make the Oobleck (otherwise known as goop) the girls actually experimented with quantities all by themselves, as part of the investigative learning experience! But the rough recipe is very simple. Add 2 cups of cornflour and 1 cup of water and mix. I think they must have added around 4 cups of cornflour and 2 cups of water as we had a LOT by the end!

Playing with oobleck

They were fascinated by the amazingly strange texture and consistency of the substance, which goes from liquid to solid and back again. If you have never tried making this you really must as you will love it as much as your children! It is a great discussion starter and a way for prompting insightful questions, that can be looked up and answered together.

Dancing Colours in Gak

I bravely handed the girls our liquid food colourings and let them add them as they pleased. The oobleck took the colour in as fascinating a way as would be expected, in that it quickly spread and made beautiful patterns like a liquid, then stopped as though frozen in ice! When they put in hands or stirrers to mix, they could very slowly and meaningfully pull the colour to create shapes. An older child or adult could make a beautiful, intentional piece of art this way. Let me know if you try it, I’d LOVE to see the result!

Mixing colours through gak

Pop had the great idea to scoop the oobleck straight onto the table, after all, it wouldn’t drip off in a hurry! They added lots of different colours and watched them swirl then stop.
Beautiful rivers of blue in a purple sea! Wonderful marbelised patterns began to form and could then be rearranged and started over again.

Swirling colours in oobleck

I love this picture of the gorgeous colours and patterns!

Then they had a go at lifting prints off the colours as it worked really well when we tried it with shaving foam earlier this year.

Lifting monoprints from oobleck

They lifted well, but if they were left on for too long they sunk under the goop into the abyss!

Mark making in gak

Here are a couple of the pretty results on paper. They dried out with a fairly chalky texture but would make nice cards or paper bunting.


Cakie: 36 months
Pop: 18 months

Learning Links:

  • Creativity: exploring colour mixing and pattern making, print making,
  • Science (Knowledge & Understanding of the World): investigating textures, combining materials, observing liquid to solid and the reverse process
  • Maths: counting out cup fulls
  • PHSE: working together, independently exploring materials,  developing thinking and curiosity
  • Fine motor: developing small muscles through squeezing, squishing and stirring

See all our other Art projects here

See our Sensory Play ideas here


  1. says

    You know, I must have done oobleck (@Monika–it’s a mixture of cornstarch and water) a hundred times, but I’ve never thought to lift a print from it? WOW! Way to combine sensory, science, AND art!

  2. says

    I stumbled across your page via and I’m so glad I did. What a wonderful idea. I have a soon to be 3 year old next month and his rate of learning blows me away… I feel like I can’t keep up… but finding these pages really gives me hope that we’ve got a lot of fun learning ahead of us. Thanks for some great tips. We’re going to make oobleck tomorrow and I can’t wait to seek out more exciting ideas from your page. Cheers ~Angie

  3. Anonymous says

    If I don’t have cornstarch on hand do you think fine rice flour would work as an alternative?