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Want to know how to make a volcano with your kids? Making a volcano that erupts is one of those good old classic science projects that kids just love doing! I am surprised that I don’t have this one on my site yet, because it’s a favorite!
My husband found an old book this past week for my son called 101 Cool Science Experiments by Glen Singleton. We flipped through the book together marking all of the pages of the experiments that we want to try. He is a little bit of a science fanatic like me. We both get excited about new experiments! He was most excited to try making a volcano!
It’s funny, so many of my experiments were done with my two older kids and now we are really enjoying recreating them with the younger half of the family. This was a favorite of my oldest son snd now the younger kids had a blast with it! Get ready for mess.
How to Make a Volcano
Watch it all here, or read on for the written instructions.
We made our volcano model with salt dough. Salt dough is super simple to make and can be air dried if you want to make it ahead and save it for a science fair project.
Salt Dough Recipe
6 cups of Flour
2 cups of Salt
2 cups of Water
2 Tbsp of Cooking Oil
Coloring (you can use food coloring or liquid water color)
Mix the best you can with a spoon, but you may need to just dig in with your hands. That’s what I had to do. This is a hard dough so you can mold it and make it stand up around the bottle for your volcano filling. You may need to add a little bit more water depending on your climate. I added 1/4-1/3 cup more after I got into it.
You may notice the gray swirls in our dough. We tried to color our dough with some black liquid watercolors, but it would have taken the whole bottle, so we gave up!
Building the Volcano
You will need a bottle in the center. You can use a soda bottle a water bottle or a glass bottle like we used. Whatever you have on hand that has a smaller opening on top should work just fine!
Place the bottle in the center of a large cookie sheet. Mold the salt dough into a volcano shape around the bottle making sure to leave an opening at the top to add your volcano’s “lava” filling.
This is tons of fun to shape it to look like an amazing volcano. My kids were creating paths for the lava to flow through.
How to Make a Volcano Erupt (With Baking Soda & Vinegar)
Now to make the eruption solution! Making the volcano erupt is fun, messy and is over pretty quick, so don’t blink! 😉
Ingredients to Make your Volcano Erupt:
Red Food Coloring- Or red liquid watercolors
A few drops of Dish Soap- about a Tablespoon
2 Tbsp Baking Soda
Mix the red coloring, water, and some dish soap together. We used about 2 cups of water, but you’ll just need to fill your bottle about 3/4 of the way full.
Put 2 Tbsp of baking soda into the bottle.
Pour in your vinegar and watch the eruption go! Now is the perfect time to teach about the chemical reaction between the baking soda and vinegar.
Can we do it again?! (That’s what your kids will say.)
I am loving that I captured their excited expressions!
Have you done this fun, classic experiment with your kids?
Make a volcano erupt with smoke by adding dry ice! Check out my smoking dragon post for tips.
Make a thicker lava by trying elephant toothpaste in the bottle!
Learn about Real Volcanos and how they really erupt by reading some books on Volcanoes!
Volcanoes! Mountains for Fire by Eric Arnold is a great place to start.
We also like the Magic School Bus Blows its Top by Gail Herman
You may also enjoy: 30 More Baking Soda and Vinegar Experiments! It has some more fun ways to experiment with this chemical reaction.