How to make a cloud

Do your kids ever ask you how a cloud is made?  My oldest asks me that a lot, and although I can explain it to her I thought it would be a LOT more fun to let her make a cloud.  That is why we decided to try this experiment.

One of the coolest things about this experiment is that you can actually see the cloud building up in the jar and then when you take the lid off you can touch it.  Both girls had fun with this experiment and we had to make several clouds so they could watch them form and then let them loose to touch.

What is happening with this experiment?  The atmosphere needs three ingredients to make a cloud, Moist Air, Cooling, and Cloud Condensation Nuclei (CCN). CCN (also known as cloud seeds) are small particles on which water vapor condenses.  In this experiment we had to make our own CNN’s that is why we lit the match and threw it in the bottle.  The little bit of smoke from the match provides a surface for the cloud to form.   After you put the match in the jar and put the lid back on you will observe the cloud growing and moving in a circular pattern, this happens as a result of the warm air rising and and the cool air sinking.


    • Jar With Lid
    • Warm Water (should be steaming a little but not boiling)
    • Ice
    • Match


How to make a cloudPour warm water in the bottom of your jar.  And flip the lid of the jar upside down and fill with ice then place on top of jar.

How to make a cloudLight a match and throw into jar then replace lid.

How to make a cloudWatch the cloud form, and how it moves in a circular pattern in the jar.

How to make a cloudOpen the Jar and let your cloud free!

How to make a cloudAs the cloud is leaving the jar you can touch it to see what it feels like.

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How to make a cloud