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Cloud in a Jar Experiment for Kids

Make a cloud in a jar with your kids as a fun and easy science experiment. This STEM activity makes for a great addition to a weather theme, or any sort of Earth science study.

Cloud in a Jar Science Experiment for Kids | Modern Homestead Mama

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As a parent of young children, I’ve been itching to do more complex science experiments with them for quite a while at this point. We do our fair share of projects that are a bit above their level, and usually, I have to do most of it for them, with my little ones as not-so-quiet observers. And, don’t get me wrong! That’s fun too.

But this experiment is especially fun, because my kids can be pretty hands-on. They don’t understand exactly how clouds are formed, but that’s okay. We’ve been talking about the water cycle for a year now, and I know when the time comes for them to truly grasp it, they’ll have a leg up on it after hearing the vocabulary words and having hands-on experience for so long.

More Science Experiments You Might Like:

Cloud in a Jar

Making a cloud in a jar for your homeschool weather unit or Earth science studies is easy. You probably already have all of the materials in your home right now!

Materials for this Science Experiment for Kids

  • Glass jar
  • Jar lid and ring
  • Ice cubes
  • Warm water
  • Hairspray

See what else we did for our Earth Science Preschool Unit HERE

Purchase the Cultivate Curiosity Earth Science Unit HERE

Use code EARTH25 for 25% off

Join the Cultivate Curiosity Homeschool Community on Facebook. There are free resources available, and it’s the perfect way to connect with other homeschool families!

Cloud in a Jar Materials

Step 1: Gather your materials. Heat up the water and bring it all to your school table. Pour the warm water 1/4 of the way up in the jar and swish it around so it heats up the sides of the jar. 

Cloud in a Jar

Step 2: Have your child place the lid upside down on top of the jar with a few ice cubes. Leave it there for about 30 seconds.

Cloud in a Jar

Step 3: Quickly remove the lid, spray a bit of hairspray in, and replace the lid with ice cubes on top.

Cloud in a Jar

Step 4: Watch the cloud form! Your child can remove the lid and watch the cloud escape.

Cloud in a Jar

How This Experiment Works

There are 3 things needed to make a cloud:

  • Moisture
  • Condensation 
  • Temperature

When the warm, moist air from the water and the cold air from the ice cubes meet, it creates a perfect temperature clash. The hairspray acts as the cloud condensation nuclei. When the water vapor cools, it forms around the hairspray droplets. When you release the trapped “cloud,” your child will watch in awe as their little cloud releases!

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What weather activities and science experiments have you done with your homeschoolers? Let me know in the comments below!

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Cloud in a Jar Science Experiment for Kids | Modern Homestead Mama

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