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Friday, October 29, 2010

Buckets O Fun - Yuck Review

I know, "fun" and "yuck" don't seem to fit in the same sentence. And trust me, yuck is NOT what your kids will be saying. But Yuck is the name of a line of polymer play materials that Buckets O Fun sells so that you can have, well, buckets of fun!

So what is Yuck? Yuck is actually four different products.

All four are made from polymer granules. The granules are of differing sizes,

and they each produce a different type of Yuck-





All you have to do is add water to each of them to get the Yuck ready to play with. They can be used for good clean fun, and game suggestions/uses are recommended on the website and on print materials. But they can also be used from a homeschooling perspective for more intentional science, and the Buckets O Fun company has paired up with a science teacher to come up with some basic experiments for you to try with your Yuck.

The pros: The Yuck Science pamphlet has great information about what polymers are and simple suggestions for activities to do with each kind of Yuck that really help to take Yuck as a "fun activity" to Yuck as a basis for some real science. And those provided activities served as a jumping off point for other ideas (i.e. let's grow seeds in it, let's use the snowy one to make bone models). Or if you just want to have fun, there are tons of suggestions for how to play with your Yuck like burying small trinkets in Chunky Yuck to find or putting Saucy Yuck on a slip and slide. The mischief/fun is endless! And a little Yuck goes a LONG way. Our samples were about a tablespoon of each type, and we have about a quart of Chunky Yuck, 3 cups each of Saucy and Snowy, and 1 cup of Sticky. I can only imagine how far a 1 lb. bucket goes!

The cons: Because Yuck is a polymer and it absorbs water, you can't just wash it off your hands without risking clogging your drains (since the polymer will continue to absorb water), so that means you really must plan out the play time with the Yuck. Plus, once it's been touched by people, bacteria is introduced, so while you might be able to play with it for a few days, you really can't reuse it safely beyond that. It strikes me that Yuck is best played with outside where you can hose it off you and anything you use it with, and it will naturally biodegrade. That makes Yuck a warm weather activity-which is not too much of a problem here in FL, but might be elsewhere.

The Bottom Line: Yuck is cool. And my kids unanimously voted the Snowy one their favorite. It's probably my favorite too. We don't get snow here in FL, so this is a very cool substitute. And beyond the coolness factor, it is a great object lesson on polymers and how they work.

Yuck can be purchased from Buckets O Fun in 1 lb buckets and the price is $18 or $20 depending on the variety. But they also will send any individual or group free samples like we got of each of the different types of Yuck so you can try before you buy. I'd highly recommend giving the samples a try and I know my kids would LOVE for me to buy a bucket of Snowy so they can have fun with it for ages to come. To read what other members of the TOS Crew had to say about their experiences with Yuck, go HERE.
Legal Disclaimer: As a member of the TOS Crew, I received a small sample packet of each of the 4 types of Yuck to try out with my kids. That is all the compensation I received from my review.

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