Homeschool Science: Tornado in a Bottle


Creating your own tornado may sound difficult, but not to fear! This simple weather experiment will delight your child while they learn just how tornadoes are created! Here’s what to do:

1. What you’ll need: The ingredients are simple. All you need is water, dish soap, and a tall and slender plastic bottle. Probably things you can find around the house.

2. How it works:

    • Fill the bottle with water, leaving just a tiny bit of room at the top.
    • Squirt in a small amount of dish soap. Careful not to put in too much or your tornado won’t be very visible and make sure to close the bottle tightly.
    • The key to the tornado is all in the way you shake it. You want to give it a good twist, sort of logical in the way you would picture a spinning tornado. Get it going and marvel at your own little tornado.
    • Note: this may take a couple of tries, as getting the spin just right without just creating a bunch of bubbles is a little tricky.

3. What they’ll learn: Explain to your child that tornado are created by the clash of warm, moist air and cool air. Changing winds and storms are also likely to contribute to tornadoes. As the air combines, the force creates a rotation, just like in their bottle!

Enjoy the experiment and be sure to check out the science subjects on SD Accelerate! Click here to sign up for our free two month promo.