We had a wonderful week exploring clay as an art material and then creating our volcanoes to use for science! Children spent the first two days getting used to the feel of the clay and comparing it to other art materials that they have used in the past (ie. play dough). We spent time as artists experimenting with toothpicks to create marks. We even used sponges and water to test how the clay reacts. On the third day, each student created their own small volcano. They were given some clay and rolled it into a ball. They then pushed their thumb into the centre and pinched around the thumb hole to widen the top. We then scratched their name into the bottom. Since I cover prep, I teach over 100 kids. Every volcano was different! I let them dry over night and they were ready to go in the morning for our volcano experiment for kids.
I handed back all of the volcanoes and gave everyone a plate, to help control the amount of clean-up we would have to do. Students filled their volcano with baking soda and I then gave them eye droppers and vinegar (that I coloured red). They added one drop and watched the reaction through their magnifying glass. They then had fun adding as much vinegar through the eye dropper that they wanted. Children were encouraged to listen to their volcano especially as it was ‘erupting’. The excitement that occurred through out this experiment was amazing. I love how hands-on the activity is and how much my students enjoyed being mini scientists.