My children came running in the house yesterday to tell me they’d made a sand volcano and could we please cover it with cling film ( we did this with the reusable volcano ) and make it erupt. I couldn’t say no after they’d been so creative so we collected what we needed and apparently it was a better volcano than mine!
An small empty container
2 spoonfuls of baking soda (bicarbonate of soda )
1 spoonful washing up liquid
a few drops of red and yellow food colouring
30 ml vinegar
Cling film optional – but does save the sand from getting too messy
What to do
Mould your volcano around the water bottle with the sand.
Cover with clingfilm – optional
Add everything except the vinegar to the water bottle.
Add the vinegar and watch the eruption! If it doesn’t work so well add a bit more washing up liquid and vinegar, or give it a good stir!
Make sure your mixture in the bottle isn’t too thick as this will slow down the reaction. If it does look gloopy, add some water and give it a good stir.
Why does this happen?
Vinegar (an acid ) and bicarbonate of soda ( an alkali ) react together to neutralise each other. This reaction releases carbon dioxide, a gas that is the bubbles you see, these bubbles make the washing up liquid bubble up to give the appearance of lava erupting from a volcano.
Try the reaction without the dish soap, is it less bubbly?
What happens if you add extra dish soap?
Can you make a volcano with red and yellow lava??
More volcano ideas
If you haven’t got sand, but have snow, how about a snow volcano?
How about making a multi-colour volcano eruption?
We love this tape volcano from Inspiration Laboratories as well.
Or try this lemon volcano from Babble Dabble Do.