Nothing says summertime like juicy watermelon – and this science experiment uses watermelon to create an exciting chemical reaction! All you’ll need is baking soda, vinegar, dish soap, food coloring, and the watermelon (you might also want a tray or a bin to catch the fizz). To prepare your watermelon, cut a small hole on top, just big enough to scoop the fruit out of the inside. Little ones will enjoy helping with this step, and the fruit can be saved for a tasty snack later! Once the fruit is cleaned out, add about ½ cup of baking soda, a couple of squirts of dish soap, and a few drops of food coloring.
When you’re ready to start the eruption, pour vinegar straight into the watermelon and watch it flow! As it erupts, talk with children about the chemical reaction that occurs when the baking soda and the vinegar are combined. (You might explain that mixing a base, which is the baking soda, and an acid, which is the vinegar, produces carbon dioxide). This activity is full of learning about chemistry and mathematics!
To add art to this activity, invite children to decorate the watermelon before the eruption, with paint, stickers, tape, and other fun items to make a colorful volcano! Or, mix two food colorings to make a new color for the eruption.