Science Explorers
Science Explorers

Earth science experiments for kids are the perfect way to help your children appreciate and understand rocks, soil, the weather and other related topics. Spark your little one’s curiosity with these epic, educational experiments.

1. The Exploding Volcano Experiment

Would an earth science experiment list even be complete without an exploding volcano? If you have had a few dud volcanoes in your time, do not fear — see our extra tips section.

What You Need

  • 6 cups of flour
  • 2 tablespoons of baking soda
  • 4 tablespoons of cooking oil
  • 2 cups of salt
  • Dishwashing detergent
  • Red food coloring
  • Vinegar
  • Warm water
  • Baking dish or pan
  • Empty soda bottle

How to Do the Experiment

Start by making the volcano cone — mix the six cups of flour, 2 cups of salt, 4 tablespoons of cooking oil and 2 cups of warm water. Add more warm water if needed. The mixture must be firm and smooth.

Now, take the soda bottle and place it on the baking tray. Mold the dough mixture around the bottle until it resembles a volcano. Be careful not to drop dough into the bottle or close the opening.

Next, fill the bottle almost all the way with warm water and red food coloring. Add 6 drops of liquid detergent and 2 tablespoons of baking soda. Then, slowly add vinegar and enjoy the eruption.

Two tips — the narrower the mouth of the bottle, the better the explosion, and don’t forget the detergent. Wider jars often have underwhelming explosions, and the dishwashing liquid adds to the show.

2. The Indoor Rainstorm Experiment

What better way to demonstrate the workings of a rainstorm than with a little fun experiment? This experiment is easy and safe to do in a classroom, dining room or any indoor area.

What You Need

  • Clear glass or jar
  • Shaving cream
  • Warm water
  • Blue food coloring

How to Do the Experiment

Fill your glass/jar halfway with warm water. Add a generous amount of shaving cream and pack it in. Use your finger to make an indent in the middle of the cloud of shaving cream.

Then, add 30 drops of blue coloring in the center of the shaving cream. Watch how the “rain” pours out the bottom of the cloud and witness your indoor rainstorm.

3. The Ocean Wave Experiment

Wave boredom goodbye by showing your kids the ocean’s surface and deep currents.

What You Need

  • 2 clear bowls
  • Eyedropper
  • 2 cups
  • Warm and cold water
  • Salt
  • Blue food coloring

How to Do the Experiment

Take one cup and fill it halfway with cold water. Add a teaspoon of salt and a few drops of blue food coloring and mix it up. Then, fill the other cup halfway with warm water, add a teaspoon of salt and some blue food coloring, and mix the solution.

In the bowl, add a separate cup of cold water and mix it with 1 tablespoon of salt. Use the dropper to add the warm blue salt water from the cup. Observe what happens.

In the other bowl, add a separate cup of warm water and mix in 1 tablespoon of salt. Now, use the dropper to add some of the cold blue salt water from the cup. Observe what happens.

Here’s a sneak preview of what you should see: The warm water should rise, and the cold water should sink, demonstrating the ocean’s convection currents.

4. The Edible Rock Experiment

You rarely get to eat your experiments! The edible rock experiment demonstrates sedimentary and metamorphic rocks.

What You Need

  • Glass jar or cup (microwave safe)
  • Chocolate chips
  • Peanut butter chips
  • White chocolate chips
  • Spoon
  • Plastic wrap

How to Do the Experiment

Add a layer of 1/4 cup of chocolate chips, then 1/4 cup of peanut butter chips and 1/4 cup of white chocolate chips to the glass. Continue the three layers until the kids can see them clearly. Use your spoon to crush the layers, showing “sedimentary” rocks.

To demonstrate metamorphic rocks:

  • Cover the jars with plastic wrap and carefully melt them in the microwave.
  • Melt the chips in 30-second intervals until all the layers have melted together.
  • Show the kids, but don’t remove the “lava-hot” chocolate until the cup cools.

Once the cup has cooled off, you can smoosh the chocolate, which should still be a little bit warm, with the spoon and show them the metamorphic rocks. Next is the experiment’s most critical part — enjoy a metamorphic treat!

5. The Indoor Snow Experiment

Indoor snow is another fun, hands-on earth experiment for your kids. The best part is that no one will freeze their fingers off.

What You Need

  • Box of cornstarch
  • Can of shaving cream
  • Tray
  • Decorations for the “snowman” (optional)

How to Do the Experiment

Add the box of cornstarch to the tray and spray the whole can of shaving cream over it. Mix them together, and then you can start playing with the snow. Try building a snowman and giving him a candy nose and face!

Cultivate the Love of Science in Your Elementary Kids

Science Explorers is passionate about igniting a love of science in kids ages 4 to 11. Our quality, inquiry-based science programs will help your kids get hands-on experience. Discover our science summer camps and after school STEM clubs.

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