Lava Lamp Experiment


Age Recommendation: Preschool or early elementary school 

Materials: See materials and instructions from Science Bob website

How to play:

Learning and Development:  With a child as young as 3, you can use this activity to spark their interest in science and to development scientific thinking. Ask questions that describe observations such as "what happened when you poured the oil over the water?" or "when did the food colouring start falling into the water?". Learning to observe and describe is part of scientific thinking and these simple science experiments are a wonderful way to introduce this.

You can then move on to questions that support explaining procedures such as "how did you get the food colouring to leave the oil?" or even scaffolding questions such as "what did you do first?" or "what did you do next?". For full details on questions you can ask to help children develop scientific inquiry read this article written by C Hoisington (2014)

Executive functions can also be developed through this activity. You can name the steps you read in the instructions and see if your child can remember the steps. The CDC states that a child around the age of 3 should be able to follow 2-3 step instructions.