1In the pot, mix 1 tablespoon of corn starch, 4 tablespoons of water, 1 teaspoon of vinegar, and 1 teaspoon of glycerin.
2With adult supervision, turn the hot plate to medium and mix the ingredients with the silicone spatula.
3As it is heated, it will start to thicken.
4Once the edges start to turn clear and it becomes thick, turn off the hot plate and carefully spread the material from the pot onto the aluminum foil. Remember not to touch it because it is hot!
5Let the material cool on the foil for 24 hours and then peel it off.
How It Works
Normal plastic is made from oil, which is unevenly distributed on Earth and is a non-renewable resource. Scientists are working on ways to make plastics from renewable resources. The bioplastic we produced is made from corn (corn starch), a renewable resource. The vinegar we mixed in caused a chemical reaction that modified the corn starch and formed a new substance. The glycerin kept it from drying out. This shows one of the ways scientists are creating bioplastic from renewable resources.
Check out the Full Lesson on Natural Resource Distribution!
In this lesson, we learn that:
Natural resources are things people use from nature like fossil fuels, water and minerals.
Earth's natural resources are unevenly distributed across the globe.
This can be explained by geological process like the movement of tectonic plates, erosion and volcanic activity.