Tuesday, November 22, 2016

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Christmas Science Activity: Sparkly Erupting Christmas Tree Experiment

Our erupting Christmas tree might just be my new favorite Christmas science project yet! And to think, this science experiment started with a sculpture art project!

It's perfect for preschoolers...aw, you know what?! It's perfect for ALL ages!! Who doesn't love a little creative, explosive fun?!!

I thought of it last week while we were making candy cane "explosions" in the park. My preschoolers absolutely adore anything that fizzes, erupts, or explodes, and putting a holiday spin on it makes it even more exciting.

Actually building a Christmas tree that we were going to erupt was one of the most fun artistic pre-explosion activities we've done!

To make your own erupting Christmas tree, you'll need the following simple supplies:

* an empty water bottle (we actually used a green soda pop bottle)
* play dough (check out the instructions below before you spend $10 buying it!) We used home-made green play dough and red play doh
* vinegar
* baking soda
* 1-ply toilet paper (optional, but useful: we made 1-ply by pulling 2-ply apart into 2 pieces)
* sequins or other sparkly decorations (we used some from a package Craft Project Ideas sent us with craft and activity supplies)
* dish soap

Easy How To:

1- Fill the bottle about half full of vinegar and add a few big squirts of dish soap. If you want to add food coloring, this is a good time to do it! Swirl the bottle to mix the vinegar and dish soap.

2- Build your Christmas tree around the empty bottle. You can mix up a batch of green play dough in about 5 minutes: just knead 2 cups salt, 2 cups water, 4 cups white flour, and about a dozen drops of green food coloring together until it is not sticky. Decorate your tree with other colors of play dough and sequins! Let your kiddos design any kind of sparkly ornament they want!

3- Wrap about a tablespoon of baking soda in the toilet paper. 

4- It's time to erupt!! We experimented with lots of different kinds of Christmas tree tops, but in the end the best way to do it all was to just remove the top of the tree and leave the bottle exposed. We popped three baking soda bundles into the bottle at once!

5- Of course, when it was all done, my kids "refilled" the erupting Christmas tree with more baking soda and vinegar several times before we were really done!

We totally thought it looked like a snow-capped Christmas tree at this point:

I would love to see your sparkly erupting Christmas trees!! Feel free to send me a picture via email, leave a comment, or stop by my Preschool Powol Packets Facebook page and leave a picture!

In the meantime, you may also enjoy this collection of Top 10 Candy Cane Science Experiments & Activities!

If you're looking for more Christmas themed science experiments, check out my ebook, 25 Christmas Science Projects for Kids:

And if you just love doing science projects with your kiddos, I have more than 200 science experiements and activities for you!

Happy Educating,

Have you seen HEEP? It is a preschool homeschool curriculum! Learn more here!

I may share at any of these parties!

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