1. Begin the lesson by asking students if they’ve ever played with Silly Putty. Ask them to discuss how they played with it, and why it was fun.
2. Then, divide the class into five groups, and, using the websites listed below, assign each group one of the following research topics:
- Who made the mistake that resulted in Silly Putty? When? Where? How?
- What is Silly Putty composed of?
- What can Silly Putty do? What are its characteristics?
- How, exactly, did the “mistake” come to be a hugely popular toy?
- How much Silly Putty is made each day? What colors does it come in? How does color-changing Silly Putty work?
3. When the research is completed, ask each group to report its findings.
4. To conclude the lesson, have a contest in which each student thinks of the “silliest way to use Silly Putty.” Have each student write one or two uses on a 3x5 card and turn it in. Write the uses on a large sheet of paper; then compare them to the “50 Silliest Uses for Silly Putty” on that website, below. If a student comes up with a use that isn’t on the website, he or she could win a Silly Putty egg!