Fourth-grade students at Letcher Elementary School made rubber bouncy balls out of corn byproducts last week, and you can too by following eight simple steps.
Most bouncy balls bought out of vending machines are made of plastics from petroleum products, which are derived from crude oil. This type of plastic does not decompose or rot and stays in the environment for thousands of years.
The bouncy balls the students made last week are biodegradable, meaning they can decompose and are environmentally friendly.
Jeff Harrod, a mobile science activity coordinator with the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, visited LES to help students conduct investigations about agriculture and the environment.
“We show students how important agriculture is to our state’s economy and how to help the environment,” said Harrod. Eight Steps 1. Place two tablespoons of cornstarch in a resealable freezer bag. 2. Add four drops of corn oil to the cornstarch. 3. Add 1/8 cup of water to the cornstarch/ corn oil mixture. 4. Close resealable bag and mix well. 5. Add four drops of food coloring. 6. Microwave material for 30 seconds. 7. Cool in ice water. Do not allow water to touch plastic. 8. Take out your newly formed sheet of plastic out of the resealable bag and form into a ball. The bouncy ball must harden for at least 10 hours for best bouncing results.