Kids Kreate


Science Experiment Make a Hectograph ( Copy Machine)


  • 2 cups of water
  • 4 packets (1 ounce) unflavored gelatin
  • 2 tsp. boric acid solution (available at pharmacies)
  • 8 x 11 baking pan


1. Pour water over gelatin and let stand for 2 to 3 hours.

2. Pour softened gelatin into a pan. Slowly bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer over low flame for 20 minutes. Add boric Acid. Very carefully pour into your baking pan.

3. Let sit over night.

You use a hectograph to make copies of papers. The early copier! Write a letter or draw a picture on typing paper with hectograph ink or use carbon paper over a sheet of paper. Old duplicating masters work great. Gently sponge the hectograph pad. It should be wet but no puddles. Lay your paper face down and smooth out. Wait one minute and remove immediately. Lay clean sheets down one at a time. Smooth out and remove. You can make many, many copies this way! When you have all the copies you want wipe clean with sponge and cold water, then start again!

If your pad dries out , cover the top with warm water. Let stand a few minutes. We kept ours covered with plastic wrap. This REALLY works!!!! My kids had a blast with this!



Belinda Mooney is the mother of seven children, a veteran homeschooler and a freelance writer. Her articles have appeared in over 70 publications. Her Kids in the Kitchen column is carried Mid-Ohio Valley Parenting, Families First and Gainesville Family. You can reach her at Kids Crafts  

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