Thursday 13 October 2011

Making a Volacano

In our home school we have been reading about Volcano's and decided to make one out of plaster of Paris from a kit I purchased from ALDI.

Sir N and our kit.

Contents of our kit. Great easy to follow instructions.

Putting the elastics on to hold the pieces together.

Plaster of Paris ready to mix.

Poured the mixture into the mold.
I got a little bit of a start as it started pouring out the sides but no fear there was enough and it soon stopped oozing.  I am grateful Paul was home when we did this as I would have waited too long before pouring the mix into the mold.  If you wait too long then you get a lot of bubbles in the mix you can't get out, it needs to be runny when you pour it in.  I also thought I had used too much water but that was not the case. We left it on the bench for about four hours and then ....
One volcano we had!

We waited for about a week before we attempted to paint it. This step was more time consuming than I had anticipated so I helped Sir N.  I think in hind sight I should have taken out the poster paint and thicker brushes.  Older sister came to the rescue and provided us with glitter glue pens which Sir N thoroughly enjoyed applying to this volcano.

The instructions say to mix paint, vinegar and dish liquid for red coloured eruption.  I was disappointed with the chemical reaction this had. (I have since learned that you need to mix food colouring, dish liquid and baking soda then add vinegar for a red eruption, we had mixed the paint, dish liquid and vinegar) So we tried again this time with baking soda and vinegar and that was much better. You could hear the bubbles forming and popping.  It was so much fun.

Baking Soda, poster paint (it's better to use food colouring)
dish liquid and vinegar.

Sir N's volcano and city.

Adding vinegar to the baking soda.

1*2*3 Success

We had lots of fun doing this.  You do not need a kit to do the same with your children.  You can accomplish the same thing using a water tight jar of some kind (plastic, metal or glass).  Put it down build up some soil around it, make your city etc then add baking soda, food colouring and dish liquid and mix in the jar.  Slowly add vinegar and watch the eruption. 


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