In this activity, students pop a balloon in a container of sand to model caldera volcanoes and learn how lakes like Taupō and Rotorua were formed.
By the end of this activity, students should be able to:
- demonstrate how caldera volcanoes are formed
- demonstrate how depressions are left after the volcano erupts
- identify Lakes Taupō and Rotorua and discuss their formation.
Download the Word file for:
- introduction/background notes
- what you need
- what to do
- extension idea.
Watch this animated video to see how Lake Rotorua could have formed from a caldera eruption.
Researchers discovered that the large underwater Hunga Tonga–Hunga Haʻapa volcano had a hidden caldera 150 m below the waves. Read about the devastating volcanic eruption in January 2022, the tsunami that followed, and what we might expect next. Find out what scientists have discovered a year after this eruption in this article.
If students enjoyed making models of caldera volcanoes, try the Making a model of a cinder cone activity.