Do this DIY lava lamp experiment with your kids and explore the reactions of water, oil and salt as a hands-on science lesson!
We always see these cool lava lamps in the shops and decided to use science to make our own lava lamp. This is an awesome activity to enjoy with the older kids as well as the young ones to explore the reactions of oil, water and salt.
You will need:
- a bottle/jar
- food coloring
What to do:
First, fill the jar three quarters with water.
Add a few drops of food coloring together with the glitter.
Then, fill the bottle to the top with oil and gave it a stir. We were surprised to see that we created a tornado in the water when we stirred the mixture. The secret is that oil is less dense than water and therefore will keep on going to the surface even when stirred(another lesson on its own).
Add a spoon of salt and see how the salt made bubbles that look like those in a lava lamp. (When the bubbles stop just add more salt.)
What is happening?
The salt is denser than water and will go to the bottom. When we pour salt into the oil and water mixture, the oil sticks to the salt and sinks to the bottom. The salt dissolves and the oil moves back to the surface. This effect creates an exciting show in the water.
Use a torch/flashlight to see how the salt creates the drops in the water. Depending on the angle of the light beam, it creates a beautiful light display.
A super cool DIY lava lamp experiment you can do at home as a science lesson. Will your kiddos like this experiment? PS: Do check out this Pink Volcano Experiment too!