Watching the waves move back and forth, splashing and tumbling shells along the beach — it can be mesmerizing. The natural sway of the water is both soothing and exciting, and waves are truly energy in motion. The tides are caused by the pull of the moon’s gravity on the Earth’s water as the Earth turns. We love science projects for kids — we’ve talked about creating a terrarium, and now we’re going to show you how to make an ocean in a bottle.
Every person who has walked along the beach wonders: what will wash upon the shore with the next wave? This activity creates an ocean in a jar, complete with waves, and will leave your child entranced with the magic of the ocean. With this portable ocean, your child will get acquainted with scientific topics while learning more about plants, animals, and the earth.
What You Need:
Glass bottle or jar
Hot glue gun
Blue food coloring
What You Do:
1. Make sure your jar is washed and clean. Help your child spoon some sand into the bottom of the jar.
2. Add water until ½ full. Add 1 drop of blue food coloring or more until you get a color you like.
3. Have your child add a few shells to your “ocean.”
4. Add vegetable oil until almost full. Leave a small space for air at the top.
5. Taking over duties, use the hot glue gun and put glue around the lid and then place the lid on the bottle.
Turn your ocean on its side and watch the waves go back and forth. Watch the sand gently move as the waves go by. Shake up the bottle. What happens to the sand? What happens to the shells? Does all the sand move as the waves move or just a little at a time?
Your ocean in a jar is too small to mimic the tidal patterns of the real ocean but will offer a great opportunity to see the effects of energy in motion.
What do you think of this DIY?