Baking Soda Volcano

When you think about an elementary school science project, what is the first thing that comes to mind?  A baking soda volcano!  I remember making one out of salt dough  and painting it to look awesome and then being amazed when I got to watch it erupt.

My boys have had a major case of “I’m Bored” syndrome since school has been out so today I decided to make an easy baking soda volcano.  No salt dough or painting involved.  Just some simple supplies that you probably have around the house.

Easy Baking Soda Volcano

Supplies needed:

  • Paper plate
  • Paper or plastic cup
  • aluminum foil
  • tape
  • scissors
  • large cookie sheet
  • 2 TBLS water
  • red food coloring
  • 2 TBLS Baking soda
  • 4 TBLS White Vinegar

Baking soda volcano

Step 1: Tape the cup to the center of the paper plate.

baking soda volcano

Step 2: Cover the cup and plate with a piece of foil and fold the foil around all of the edges of the plate.

Step 3: Cut an X in the top of the foil and fold down the tabs and tape them to the inside of the cup.

baking soda volcano

Step 4: Put your volcano in the center of a large cookie sheet and add the water, baking soda and several drops of red food coloring into the cup.  baking soda volcano

Step 5: Slowly pour in the vinegar.

baking soda volcano

Step 6: Watch your volcano erupt again and again.  My boys continued to make the volcano erupt until we were out of vinegar and baking soda.  And as soon as I buy more, I’m sure they’ll be at it again.

baking soda volcano

This is a great simple science project because it is easy to do and easy to explain.  I told my boys a little about what an acid and a base is and that the “eruption” is what happens in an acid/base reaction.  The chemical reaction between baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) and vinegar (acetic acid) produces carbon dioxide gas, which forms bubbles, making the volcano erupt.

Simple, yet fascinating to little kids.

If your kids love simple science projects and liked this baking soda volcano, they would love our post on Growing Crystals.

What are you doing to keep “I’m Bored” syndrome away at your house?