Tornado in a Bottle: Easiest DIY Science Lesson EVER!

This is seriously the easiest homemade science lesson…even science TOY, if you will…that you will ever make!

I saw this pin on Pinterest and knew we’d have fun with it!  So a big thank you goes out to EllieMoon for this blog post: Tornado in a Jar DIY.

The ingredients for this science toy are:
*a clean bottle/jar
*dish soap 

Could it get any simpler?

I have been saving the kids’ vitamin jars and decided that one of those would be perfect since it has a child-proof lid.  (No need in getting soapy water all over the house if it can be avoided, right?)  The jar is also thick plastic, so I don’t have to worry about it breaking into a thousand shards of super sharp glass should the kids drop it while shaking!


I put the water in the bottle and let the kids squeeze in some dish soap.  We used Seventh Generation, but anything will work.  I screwed the cap on and made sure the bottle was watertight.  It was! 🙂

So, here’s our tornado!  (Please note: it is very hard to shake a jar, pick up your camera, get it to focus, and snap a pic before the little teeny tornado vanishes.  The tornadoes we create are much cooler than I was able to actually capture in the photos since I was working alone during nap time.)



We’ve been keeping the tornado-in-a-bottle on our kitchen table.  It’s at the right eye-level for the kids there and I’ll shake it up once or twice while we’re eating for us all to enjoy.

You really can shake it all different ways to create a tornado.  That in itself is kind of a fun experiment.

I think it’d be fun to also experiment with different sizes of bottles to see which make the best tornadoes!  You could also try adding some food coloring, glitter, grass, or little objects like Monopoly houses to the water/soap mix for some additional experimentation!

Okay, so there you have it.  Go use up something in your fridge, wash the jar/bottle, and peel the label.  That’ll be the hardest part of this really fun science toy! 🙂

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