Lava Lamps.

January 26, 2014

0 minute read

Hello there múinteoiri,
I hope all is well. This is just a brief post on a science experiment we did this week. There are three science experiments I do all the time, over and over again. ( with different classes of course!) They are, the infamous butter making experiment, the messy but fun ice cream making experiment, and the good old lava lamps. All fall under the strand of materials and change, and all three can be adjusted to use with any class. So this is just a short description of the lava lamp experiment, even though I am sure everyone knows it inside out at this stage!

Subject: Science
Strand: materials and change

empty water bottles. ( small 350ml if they are doing one each, 500ml or bigger for group lava lamps)
food colouring
vitamin C fizzy tablets. ( I forget the full name for them!) ( cheapest place to buy- Aldi, I think they cost 1:49 or so)

All you need to do is to have roughly a third of the bottle full of water, then allow the children to fill the rest of the bottle with oil. Next, add the food colouring, ( don’t let the kids do this and ensure the tables are covered with newspaper) then add half of a tablet. Then tighten the lid and watch the particles separate to form a beautiful lava lamp. I think red food colouring works best but I only had green for mine, and it was a bit dark.

Advice: Do not deviate from the procedure! I was feeling adventurous and added two tablets to one lava lamp. Next thing the lid flew off, hit the roof and the lava lamp exploded everywhere! The children thought it was very exciting but it frightened the life out of me!
As far as experiments go, this one is very manageable and is not at all messy, but for the food colouring which is a pain if it gets on your hands!

Here’s a couple of pictures of our lava lamps:


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