Science does not need to be ‘scary studies’ to your kid while you can always fill their heads with fun facts. Let us look at some important volcano information for kids.
Interesting Volcano Facts and Information for Your Child
- Volcanoes are, in fact, deep openings on the earth’s surface. Active volcanoes are dangerous and emit gas, ash and hot magma. These cause volcanic eruptions that are violent to look at and at the same time spectacular.
- The nomenclature of a volcano is quite apt considering what it is. The name has originated from the word Vulcan, the name of the Roman God of fire.
- On the surface of the earth, the places where tectonic plates meet each other are the places where volcanoes are usually located. Especially, the Pacific Ring of Fire is a burning example of this. This area is located around the Pacific Ocean, where 75% of the world’s volcanoes are situated.
- Most volcanoes form around tectonic boundaries. However, sometimes volcanoes also form in those areas where the earth holds extremely hot rock inside. These hotspots are known as mantle plumes. In many locations around the globe, such mantle plumes are found. Hawaii is the most notable among them.
- One of the most confusing fun facts about volcanoes is that magma and lava are the same substance. While the liquid rock boiling under the earth’s surface is called magma. After it comes out of a volcano, it is called lava.
- There are three different kinds of volcanoes: Shield volcanoes give out certain low viscosity lava flow. This lava flows for dozens of kilometers. Stratovolcanoes grow enormous heights to create the biggest volcanoes on earth and in the eruptions, you can spot only ash and rock. Cinder cone volcanoes are smaller in size and the eruptions are very short-lived, with a maximum height of 400 meters.
- Volcanoes can be further categorized into three types of volcanoes. A volcano that had erupted in the past (within the last thousand years) is called an active volcano. The volcano which had an eruption in the past and is going to have an eruption in the coming days is called a dormant volcano. However, the volcanoes which do not have any probability of an eruption are called an extinct volcano.
- Most of the volcanoes take many years to form. However, some volcanoes can grow so fast that it can happen overnight. Paricutin, the cinder cone volcano formed in a Mexican cornfield on February 20, 1943. It grew beyond 336 meters in just a year!
- Right now all over the world, there are nearly 20 active volcanoes. Those are erupting at this moment (yes, as you are going through this). Some of these volcanoes are showing new activities; the others are continuing their activity. In the last decade, nearly 160 volcanoes were active.
- The tallest volcano on the solar system is on Mars. The name of this volcano is Olympus Mons. It is 27 kilometers tall with a 550-kilometer perimeter. Since there are no tectonic plates on Mars and there is only a single hotspot where the lava is being stored for so many years, the volcano can grow very big.
- There are 1500 dormant volcanoes in the world out of which 169 volcanoes are situated in the USA. Before the USA, at the third position in the world, Indonesia and Japan hold respectively the 1st and 2nd position in terms of the number volcanoes formed.
- There are many dangerous effects of volcanoes. A volcanic eruption can cause tsunamis and other threatening natural calamities. However, people still set up homes close to volcanoes. You want to know why? Research says that the soil around the volcanoes is very fertile. Hence it helps to grow the population density.
- Do you know lava is very, very hot? It can even reach 2282 degrees Fahrenheit. One of the fun volcano eruption facts is that the Maleo bird uses this heat from the volcanoes to hatch their eggs.
- Volcanoes do not always erupt inside a jungle, miles away from the locality as we see in the movies or read in the novels. In 1985, Nevado Del Ruiz, a volcano in Columbia erupted. 25000 people were killed in this unfortunate incident. The entire city of Pompeii, an ancient city, got buried under the eruption of the volcano.
- Tamu Massif, the largest volcano on earth is situated 2 kilometers below the sea at about 1600 kilometers East of Japan. However, the world’s largest volcano on land is Mauna Loa in Hawaii.
- After the volcanic eruption, the piece of land sometimes forms a basin-like feature. This is called a caldera.
- The process of the formation of a volcano is called subduction. Due to the pressure from subduction, magma is created.
- Mount Fuji and Vesuvius are the two most famous volcanoes in the world. Both of these are situated in Japan.
- Magma contains high levels of silica.
- Shield volcanoes always have sloping sides because of the method of lava eruption.
These were some facts about volcanoes. There are many unknown facts about the mysteries and science behind volcanoes. The scientists are still researching to find new information about different stages of volcanoes and how they grow and erupt.