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What does magma look like when it first comes out of a volcano? Surely it doesn't look like cereal! Let's look into this:

Pour some red and orange dye into a pan of hot wheat cereal. Add water, stir, and bring to a boil on a hot plate. Observe the bubbling action. Magma in volcanoes looks much like this when it surfaces as lava. Some of us have seen televised pictures of the Hawaiian volcano, Kilauea, spewing magma. Painful as it is to admit, it actually DOES look like that!

Scientists theorize that the earth's surface was much like this millions and millions of years ago.

I don't think that the brilliant scientist meant to imply that the entire surface of the earth was hot, flowing magma. However, there were many, many volcanic eruptions, and some vulcanologists (people who study volcanoes) believe that without volcanoes we would have neither water nor the air we breathe.

Two main components of that which comes from volcanoes are water vapor and the gases that are necessary for our air.

Turn off the heat. Allow the material to cool, and observe the changes that take place of the surface of the cereal. You can realize that the earth may have cooled in a similar way and that the cooling took a very long time. Longer than it would take for you to have a walk in the woods!

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