An indoor rainstorm – Blaine and I have been fairly busting at the seams to share this earth science activity with you all because we finally get the chance to introduce you to one of the local experts from the earth science leg of our journey!
We already let the cat out of the bag about Doc Hibbel’s return, but this is the first time you all have ever met Carver Brighton! He’s an expert in geochemistry, which is the part of science that uses chemistry to explain what is going on around the Earth. In other words, he is super smart!
Anywhoo, we asked Carver to come by the blog today to share a bit about rain and how you can make it rain indoors.
Let’s get to it!
How to make an indoor rainstorm
Thanks Blaine and Tracey, I truly enjoyed my time with you all in the Congo!
It is my professional opinion every student should see firsthand why rain falls from clouds in the sky at least once.
But before I share how you can do this at home, let’s review some of the information I shared with the twins about rain.
Rain is simply water falling from clouds in the sky as droplets. Rain forms when warm, moist air rises and condenses to form a cloud of water vapor. The micro-droplets then collect together to form bigger droplets, which fall to the ground because of gravity. Raindrops are quite tiny, only a hundredth to a tenth of an inch in diameter. Very fine drops of rain fall at a rate of about two miles per hour, while very heavy drops fall as fast as eighteen miles per hour.
So now that we all understand what rain is, let’s create our own indoor rainstorm!
You will need the following:
- A clear glass
- Shaving cream
- Blue food coloring
- Warm water
Here’s what you need to do:
- Fill the glass halfway with warm water.
- Squirt a shaving cream cloud on top of the water. (Note – You can pack the shaving cream in a bit before adding an indention in the center so that the food coloring won’t run over the “cloud”.)
- Slowly add 20 to 30 drops of blue food coloring in the center of the shaving cream cloud.
- Watch and wait for the food coloring “rain” to fall out of the bottom of the shaving cream “cloud”.
And there you have it, a simple indoor version of a rainstorm!
Wrap-up from the Sassafras Twins
Blaine and I have spent more than a few hours creating our own indoor rainstorms. We might have even made a few multi-colored ones along the way!
Here’s a handy infograph you can pin for how to make an indoor rainstorm:
We trust that your kids will enjoy it as much as we did!
If you want to take this a step further with your students, check out how to create a mini-version of the water cycle in a plastic baggie!