Trenton has been obsessed with volcanoes for a couple of months now. He is constantly asking questions about them. Can we visit a hot lava volcano? How hot is the lava? Where is the closest volcano? And on and on. It’s over six months until Trenton’s 4th birthday, but he’s already decided that he wants a volcano birthday cake!
Last week while Trenton was at preschool, Charlotte and I went to one of the local libraries to see what they had as far as volcano books. We hit the jackpot and wound up bringing home six volcano books and three volcano movies. I had one excited little boy when I showed him what Charlotte and I had found.
We read the volcano books every day. The babysitter read volcano books. Trenton flipped through one of the books with one of my friends and taught her everything he knew about volcanoes.
And the movies. I’ve lost count of how many times Trenton has asked to watch Bill Nye the Science Guy.
I remembered a Magic School Bus book about volcanoes from when I was younger, but our library didn’t have it – only the Spanish version of the book. I did happen to find the movie on YouTube though, and Trenton and Charlotte have both enjoyed watching it.
Trenton and Charlotte both got to make their very own erupting volcanoes this weekend. I got the idea from Teach Preschool to bury our volcano bottles outside. Since our backyard is made up entirely of wood chips, this was fairly easy. The kids each mounded up a bunch of wood chips to make their volcanoes.
Instead of using the traditional vinegar/baking soda mixture, we tried out Preschool Powol Packets elephant toothpaste instructions.
The instructions called for 6% hydrogen peroxide, which I didn’t have. I was able to use my regular old 3% by making a few changes. Our lava wasn’t as thick as the pictures on the Preschool Powol Packets post, but it still worked good. Here’s how we did it.
Mix 2 Tbsp warm water and 1 tsp yeast together in a measuring cup (for ease of pouring) and set aside.
In a water/soda bottle (no larger than 16 oz), mix 1/2 cup hydrogen peroxide, 5ish drops of food coloring, and 2-3 squirts of dish soap.
Set plastic bottle into the volcano mound with just the top sticking out.
Trenton was scared to touch the “hot lava”, but Charlotte dove right in. Anyone want to guess what color her hands were for the rest of the day?
The kids loved making their own volcanoes! I think I’m going to try to find some 6% hydrogen peroxide so that I can have it on hand the next time we want to make volcanoes. I’m anxious to see how much of a difference it will make.
If you have older kids (or are a science nerd), be sure to check out the elephant toothpaste post, as the scientific formula for the reaction is explained.
Our favorite volcano books:
An Island Grows – Lola M. Schaefer
Scholastic Q&A: Why Do Volcanoes Blow Their Tops – Melvin & Gilda Berger
Volcanoes: Mountains That Blow Their Tops – Nicholas Nirgiotis
Volcanoes: Nature’s Incredible Fireworks – David L. Harrison
Our favorite volcano movies:
Bill Nye the Science Guy: Volcanoes
The Magic School Bus: Blows Its Top (The full length movie is on YouTube, but I don’t know enough about copyright laws to feel comfortable posting the link here. That certainly doesn’t stop you from searching it though!)
This post is linked to: It’s Playtime @ Hands On: As We Grow, Read.Explore.Learn. @ JDaniel4’s Mom, Weekly Kids Co-op @ Local Fun for Kids, Read Aloud Thursday @ Hope is the Word, The Sunday Showcase @ Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas. Made By Little Hands @ Delicate Construction