The erupting volcano is mainly about the chemical reaction between vinegar and baking soda.
We’ve made a volcano for extra effect but it does take some time and the craft level is better suited to older children. if you want you can just have fun with vinegar, baking soda and a plastic bottle.
You will need :
- Small plastic bottle
- Baking Soda (Bicarbonate of soda)
- Sticky Tape
- Thick cardboard base
- Paint and paintbrush
- Flour (2 tbsp) and water (8 tbsp) (paper mache paste)
- Cut the top and bottom off the plastic bottle (cut in the middle of the ridges if it has them – it’s easier to slot the ends together)
- Slot the top and bottom of the bottle together and secure well with sticky tape.
- Place the ‘mini bottle’ on top of the middle piece of the bottle and secure well with sticky tape.
- Place the bottle in the middle of your card
- Scrunch up sheets of newspaper and tape them in place around the bottle. Don’t stick them to the bottle though, we want to take the bottle out later.
- Build the scrunched newspaper mountain up until it reaches the bottle top. Securing all the time with more sticky tape. This doesn’t have to be neat. IMPORTANT – make sure you can still remove the bottle at each stage and the newspaper doesn’t go higher than the bottle top.
- Cover the mountain in one layer of paper mache and leave to dry.
- Remove the plastic bottle and paint the volcano – remember to paint some red lava around the top. Leave to dry.
- Pour a teaspoon or two of baking soda into the bottle and replace it in the hole of the volcano.
- Pour some vinegar in the bottle and watch the volcano erupt! See steps in photos.
- You don’t have to cut the plastic bottle down but if you don’t you will use a lot more vinegar for the reaction to reach the top of the container.
- When building your newspaper mountain, scrunch the newspaper tighter the further up you go so the mountain gets smaller at the top.
- For the paper mache paste, use two heaped tablespoons of flour and 8 tablespoons of water. This should be enough paste for the whole mountain.
- Make sure you’re outside when you erupt the volcano!
- Heat the vinegar in the microwave for 30 seconds before pouring it in the volcano – it will cause a quicker and faster reaction. Similarly, shaking the bottle will create a more extreme reaction if you have not made the volcano base and are just experimenting with a bottle.
- When you’ve erupted the volcano, take the bottle out, wash it, and go again.
- The volcano won’t last forever but it should last as long as you’re having fun – and until the vinegar runs out! Be careful of the paint as it will become wet and get all over your clothes.