Lava Lamp

Aquila magazine arrives monthly in our house, and is an education in itself, full of interesting and informative ideas, articles, challenges, puzzles and competitions. From the most recent issue, my eldest two boys and I added to our understanding of earthquakes, volcanoes and pressure. As we read and talk, they remember feeling earthquakes when we lived in Turkey, and drilling for such an event in school there. As we look at the maps of the earth's faultlines and continental plates, we see why Turkey is so susceptible.

As a practical activity, we make a lava lamp, a practical suggestion from the same magazine. All three boys are fascinated by this make, which continues to stand on our kitchen windowsill with a supply of alka-seltzer tablets at the ready.

Simply half fill a bottle with water, and add a few drops of food colour. Then top up the container with oil. Break alka-seltzer (or other similar fizzing) tablets into small pieces and drop in a piece at a time. Enjoy the results!