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Make a Volcano

Home > Adelaide > Misc | Craft | Fun for Children
by Natasha Stewart (subscribe)
Food and words.
Published July 4th 2011
Next rainy weekend grab the kids together and get to work making this awesome volcano. This can be a great chance for kids to learn about geography and science, teach them about volcanoes and chemical reactions in one go. They'll also have a lot of fun.

What you'll need:
1 Sheet thin polystyrene
Chicken wire
1.25L empty soft drink bottle
White Paper
Flour Water
Brown, yellow, green, and blue paint
Small rocks (ones for fish tanks can be great)
Small twigs with leaves
White vinegar
Red food colouring
Baking soda
Liquid detergent

Most of these ingredients can either be found around the house, or from your local Reject Shop or Cheap as Chips. Otherwise places like Spotlight or Lincraft should be able to help you out.

1. Cut about 4cm off the top of your Soda Bottle. Place it off centre on your piece of polystyrene, and form the chicken wire around the bottle to form a volcano shape.
2. Rip the newspaper into strips about 2cm thick and 10cm long.
3. Mix flour and water together, make sure mixture is not to thick.
4. Begin covering chicken wire. Place strips of newspaper in flour mixture so that it sticks around the chicken wire. Cover around the rim of the bottle, and around the base of volcano. This way chicken wire will be fixed to both the base and bottle.
5. Once you have covered chicken wire with a few layers of newspaper, cover it with one layer of white paper.

Let your volcano dry. If you want to speed things up, you can use a hairdryer. Once it is dry it is time to get decorating.

6. Paint your volcano. Use brown paint on the volcano, and yellow, green, and blue paint for land, sand, and water. You can use red paint if you like to create lava trails.
7. While paint is still wet scatter small rocks around the volcano.
8. Let the volcano dry. Then place twigs around your polystyrene base as trees.
9. Fill a 600ml soft drink bottle or a jug with white vinegar. Add red food colouring to the mixture, and set aside.
10. Fill the inside of the volcano 1/2 of the way with water. Add two table spoons of bicarb-soda, and a few drops of liquid detergent.

When you are ready for the big explosion, pour some of the vinegar mixture into the volcano.

The Erupting Volcano

This is a fun activity for kids to get involved in. They will love both the craft activity of making the volcano, and the grand explosion at the end. This is a safe experiment to do at home, but you may want to lay down some tarp just incase there is any spillage.
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Why? Fun and educational rainy day activity
When: Weekend, School Holidays, or a Rainy Day
Where: Home
Cost: Free - $20 (depending on what you already have)
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