How to make an erupting volcano

The children love to get a little bit messy and creative, especially Isabella so we decided a couple of weekends ago that we decided to find out how to make an erupting volcano.

Getting started

What you will need for this experiment:

  • A plastic bottle (Note – if you are going to use a large bottle you will need more ingredients to make the eruption really work!)
  • Newspaper or kitchen roll
  • PVA glue
  • Masking tape
  • Paint
  • Food colouring
  • Bicarbonate of soda (around 4-5 tbs)
  • White vinegar (around 1 cup)
  • Cardboard
  • Water

The process

Have an adult cut down your bottle to the required size or more preferably, use a smaller bottle and stick to a cardboard base. To get the right shape, for larger bottles you might need to cut the middle of the bottle out and use masking tape to stick the top and bottom of the volcano back together. As you can see from our pictures, we had a small leak but we think it actually added to the look of the lava spilling out.

Once you have the right sized bottle, add layers of rolled up newspaper or scrap paper around the bottom of the bottle to create the right shape for your volcano. Stick it down using masking tape.

Having now got the right shape, it’s time to get messy. Using your ripped up newspaper or kitchen roll and your glue and water mixture, stick strips of Paper Mache to your volcano. Leave to dry.

The morning after the children were excited to start painting their volcano. They chose to mix reds and greens to try and get their perfect volcano look. Again, leave the volcano to dry. Ours thankfully only took a couple of hours to dry before we could begin the experiment.

NOTE: I would have a practice with your ingredients first with the correct size container. We didn’t and therefore our first ‘explosion’ was a bit of a let down.

Once you are ready to witness the magic happen, put your bicarbonate of soda (around 4-5 tbs) in the volcano. In a separate jug or container, mix your food colouring with your white vinegar. Get ready to pour; be quick when you add the mixtures together and watch the volcano erupt.

Voila! Your very own home made volcano!

If you’ve enjoyed this, why not pop over and see Eva’s amazing posts at Captain Bobcat another parenting and life’s blog.

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