I certainly will not surprise you by saying that my son is a fan of dinosaurs. A few months ago we came across a documentary on TV that explained the theory of the extinction of dinosaurs after the eruption of a series of super volcanoes. Gabchou was very intrigued by this story and immediately asked me a pleiad of questions about volcanoes.

I figured that the best way to explain to him how a volcano works is to make him a workshop with a homemade volcano. In addition, the advantage of this educational activity is that you can easily make a volcano with a few tinkers from the cupboards in your kitchen (especially if you like eco-cleaning with white vinegar and bicarbonate).

The interest of the game of the volcano

  • Explain to the children what a volcano is and how it works. For this purpose you can prepare explanatory sheets or watch a small educational film on Youtube to show them the pressure of the magma under the earth’s crust and the eruption of the volcano.
  • Parallel with the chemical reaction that occurs between bicarbonate and vinegar (alkaline salt and acid). When bicarbonate and vinegar interact the reaction releases gas called “carbon dioxide.” This gas exerts pressure on the walls of the bottle and tries to escape in the form of an eruption. It is the same for volcanoes where the gases accumulated in the bowels of the earth escape by projecting heated rocks and lava.
  • Representing the scene of extinction of dinosaurs with the eruption of super volcanoes and the formation of dinosaur fossils in the layers of the land that have remained to this day.

How to make the volcano?

Ingredients for the volcano

  • 200g of flour
  • 100g of coffee grounds
  • 100g of salt **
  • 100ml of water
    * Alternatively you can replace with a little earth from the garden or sand for an even more realistic effect.

** You can put 50g of salt and 50g of coarse salt like me for a somewhat gritty effect of the ground or just add small pebbles.

Ingredients for lava

  • 100g of bicarbonate
  • 100ml of white vinegar
  • Red dye
  • 1 “spray” of dishwashing liquid


  1. Mix the flour, the coffee grounds, the salt and the water to obtain a “earth” modeling clay. If necessary add a little water.
  2. Glue the paste “earth” around a plastic bottle whose neck has been previously cut to the cutter. The idea is to build the structure of the volcano around the bottle. Leave this “construction” task to the children, it’s even more fun! 😉 activity for children volcano house
  3. It’s optional, but I preferred to dry the volcano a few seconds in my microwave to solidify the structure, because the dough tends to harden. This avoids during the eruption of having a soft dough that stalls. Here is the final rendition.fabricate a house volcano
  4. Put the built volcano in a plastic tray or on a tray.You can make a small decor of circumstance. We used the dinosaurs of Gabchou.bac sensory dinosaurs and volcano
  5. Pour the bicarbonate into the volcano using a funnel. Tutorial to make a volcano eruption
  6. Mix vinegar, red dye and dishwashing liquid. Then pour the liquid preparation gently into the neck of the volcano. Observe the effect of eruption that occurs.Homemade volcano erupts easily a house volcano
  7. You can repeat the operation as many times as you want by adding bicarbonate and colored vinegar.Volcanic eruption with ingredients from the kitchen.

Gabchou had a lot of fun with this activity, we have done it several times at home and it is always as much fun. 🙂

If you still have a bit of excess paste like “earth”, you can also make “fossils” by pressing dinosaurs or shells against the dough. Once dried in the sun or microwave the dough hardens. You can then make color with red paint (or other) inside the trace of the fossil so that it emerges even better.

Repeat without moderation during rainy days or holidays! Activity adapted to children from 3 years. 😉

So the volcanic eruption “homemade” that tempts you to occupy your kids?


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