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Rain Cloud in a Jar Experiment

This science experiment is perfect for Fall, Winter, and Spring! With the weather shifting throughout these seasons, rain cloud in a jar is an all-time favorite to explore whenever it rains. Whether you watch rain from a window or have fun splashing & jumping outside, children can observe through watching, feeling, and listening to the rain.

After they see, hear, feel, and explore the rain you can open a discussion about rain. Some fun facts to talk about:

  • The average puffy, white rain cloud weighs as much as 100 elephants?!

  • The rain cycle starts with bodies of water evaporating under the warmth of the sun, turning from liquid to gas. That warm gas rises up into the sky. But as it rises, it hits cooler air — and as it cools, it turns liquid again.

  • Water droplets are itty-bitty. The average drop inside a cloud is smaller than the thickness of a piece of paper. When billions of these droplets come together, a visible cloud forms. So while an entire cloud may be heavy, the individual droplets are much lighter than the air around them. Eventually, the droplets (which can attract more water themselves) in the clouds are heavy enough to be pulled down by gravity — and that's rain!

After talking about rain, you can continue to explore creating their very own rain cloud. To set this up first set out a clear glass, jar, or cup with water, leaving 1/2 inch of room for shaving cream. Place shaving cream to represent the cloud. The glass represents the atmosphere. Provide another cup with blue colored water. You can use food coloring or Colorations® Liquid Watercolors. Provide the child with pipettes, twisty droppers, spray bottle, canister cups, or a plui Cloud.

Next, invite the child to create rain. Have them draw colored water with their tool and squeeze it over the shaving cream rain cloud. While they use their fine motor skills and hand eye coordination, they will begin to see that they will make the cloud rain! Scientific opportunities such as this let children learn and explore their environments through a multi layer hands on approach. As they learn about cause and effect, cycles of nature, comparisons, chemical and physical changes, reactions and properties of matter, their curiosity about how the world works continues to build.

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