Kids of all ages will love this Christmas twist on the classic lava lamp science experiment. Add glitter to your lava for even more festive fun. This activity is the perfect simple science experiment to do during the holidays with young kiddos just getting started with science.
You don’t have to use mason jars for this science activity, but we love to use them in our science projects. You could also use beakers, a measuring cup, or regular cups. One fun twist on this experiment is to see how the mixture bubbles up in different sizes or shapes of containers.
Fill each jar about 1/2 of an inch full of water. Add red food coloring to one jar and green to the other.
Fill the jars up the rest of the way with vegetable oil (you can also use baby oil).
Wait for the mixture to separate. This is a good time to talk to the kids about liquid density and why the oil rises to the top.
Once the mixtures settle, break an Alka-Seltzer table into small pieces. Let the kids drop the pieces in one by one.
If they have never done this activity before, they will be quite excited.
If they have done it before, they will still love doing it again.
Talk to the kids about the chemical reaction happening between the acid and base mixtures in the tablet, and why that makes bubbles in the jar. When the tablet hits the water, the baking soda and citric acid in the tablet react, making carbon dioxide. This brings a bit of water along with the floating gas, creating lava lamp bubbles in the jar.
Our Favorite Christmas Books:
We can’t live without these!
Once your child’s creativity is sparked with this fun activity, take it a step further with these engaging resources:
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Grumpy Monkey Oh, No! ChristmasHow to Catch a Gingerbread ManLittle Blue Truck’s ChristmasThe Jolly Christmas PostmanMadeline’s ChristmasPete the Cat’s 12 Groovy Days of ChristmasThe Giving Snowman: A Children’s Bedtime Story about GratitudeThe Nativity Story for Toddlers and Kids: The Christmas Book with Simplified Classic Bible Jesus’ Birth Story and Cute, Large Pictures (Christian Stories for Children)Don’t Push the Button! A Christmas Adventure: An Interactive Holiday Book For ToddlersHumphreys First ChristmasConstruction Site on Christmas Night: (Christmas Book for Kids, Children’s Book, Holiday Picture Book) (Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site)Jan Brett’s The NutcrackerPolar Express 30th Anniversary EditionThe Best Christmas Pageant Ever (The Herdmans series Book 1)The Littlest Reindeer (Littlest Series)
More from our Shop
Find even more engaging activities in the Life Over C’s shop!