"Sure", I said. "Let's find a piece of wood, some screen, newspaper, starch, and paint."
"Can't we just mix baking soda and vinegar in a bottle?" Avery asked.
My kids could mix baking soda and vinegar every day and never cease to be amazed by the results. I've encouraged them to conduct their experiment in the toilet, and see what happens when they scrub the concoction with a toilet brush, but they're too smart for that trick.
They took their experiment outside, adding a new ingredient to the mix: dish soap.
The dish soap made a big, foamy eruption that lasted much longer.
I found the perfect book to read aloud while the mad scientists worked. Pompeii: Lost and Found by Mary Pope Osborne, a non-fiction companion to her fictional chapter book, Vacation Under the Volcano.
According to the book, today is the anniversary of the devastating eruption of Mt. Vesuvius. The eruption occurred in 79 A.D.
Avery had an excellent idea for Aidan's lava flow: we traced his hand, upside down, on top of the volcano. He colored in his hand, and sure enough, it looked like lava flowing down the side of his volcano. He then drew a person flying out of the volcano; his idea of a fun adventure no doubt. Avery turned her picture into a Red Cross Poster for natural disaster relief.
Our morning turned into an impromptu unit study; unplanned homeschooling at it's finest. We covered science, math, history, social studies and art in one fell swoop, and had fun to boot. To think it all started with boredom. Following ideas - that is how we learn.