postcards from volcanoes pinatubo
postcards from volcanoes matua
postcards from volcanoes mnt st helens
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Follow Tanno and Iguda on an expedition all around the world on a mission from Dr Volcano. They find out all about volcanoes, eruptions, and the countries where we find volcanoes.

Learn MoreSchools Package

PostcardsFromVolcanoes Educational Benefits

The postcards themselves offer material that will stretch students’ vocabulary and scientific literacy. Especially:

Primary National Curriculum Science:

Pupils should be taught to

  • compare and group together different kinds of rocks on the basis of their appearance and simple physical properties
  • describe in simple terms how fossils are formed when things that have lived are trapped within rock
  • recognise that soils are made from rocks and organic matter

Notes and guidance (non-statutory)

Linked with work in geography, pupils should explore different kinds of rocks and soils, including those in the local environment.

Pupils might work scientifically by: observing rocks, including those used in buildings and gravestones, and exploring how and why they might have changed over time; using a hand lens or microscope to help them to identify and classify rocks according to whether they have grains or crystals, and whether they have fossils in them. Pupils might research and discuss the different kinds of living things whose fossils are found in sedimentary rock and explore how fossils are formed. Pupils could explore different soils and identify similarities and differences between them and investigate what happens when rocks are rubbed together or what changes occur when they are in water. They can raise and answer questions about the way soils are formed.

Secondary National Curriculum

  • the composition of the Earth
  • the structure of the Earth
  • the rock cycle and the formation of igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks

Meet Doctor Volcano!!

Dr Volcano is the alterego of volcano scientist Dr Dougal Jerram.

Dr V sends Tanno and Iguda on their expedition to find out all sorts of information about volcanoes.

Volcanologist extraordinaire, Dr Dougal Jerram is the author of PostcardsFromVolcanoes. He’s also an author of books about volcanoes, for all ages and academic levels, which you can check out on his website at In particular, do check out the adventures of Victor the Volcano.

dr dougal jerram in a heat suit next to a volcano

PostcardsFromVolcanoes Content

Each card features a different location with fun facts and the next instalment of Tanno and Iguda’s story. A QR code printed on the card links to a “secret” web page detailing fun activities and further learning.



Skills & Learning

Equipment needed


Plate tectonics activity book.**
Comprehension from reading and maps; home experiments; plate tectonics;
Jar of honey, syrup or a bottle of oil with the lid on, ketchup or jam, toothpaste

Vesuvius - Pompeii

Create your own moulds.**
Craft modelling; archaeological methods;
Sand (wet) or kinetic sand, plaster of Paris, Hands/feet/objects

Erta Ale

Golden syrup viscosity experiment.**
Scientific method; controlled experimentation; graphing; scientific communication; drawing;
Golden Syrup, cardboard, tape and scissors, pens/pencils, ruler/tape measure, stopwatch


Build your own volcano.**
Craft modelling; research; artwork;
various possibilities: plasticine or you can build up a detailed model with papier-mâché, cardboard, wire mesh, paints and other craft resources


Mix your own magma.**
Research; home experiments; calculations
Honey, Couscous, plastic bowls / cups, spoons, plastic trays, blocks to stand the trays on (and tape to secure) marker pens, timer / stop watch, calculator, cleaning materials, straws, balloon, balloon pump, ruler

Mt Erebus

Make yourself a volcano cake.**
Cooking; home experiments; calculations
cake making ingredients (various depending on choice of cake to make)

Mt St Helens

Make your own caldera.**
Home experiments; modelling; pressure and forces;
A box, balloon and pump, some flour


Explosive volcano experiment. **
Home experiments; modelling; pressure and forces; measurement;
Some fizzy (effervescent) tablets such as vitamin ones, a container with a stiff pop off cap (like the ones that vitamin tablets come in), some protective glasses

Mt Fuji

Volcano Art
Artwork; artistic styles and art history;
paints and paper


Volcano hazards poster
Research; design; poster making; scientific communication;
poster making materials, pens and paper.


Make your own lava lamp.**
Home experiments; modelling; convection;
a lamp, vegetable oil, vinegar (clear), Food colouring, baking soda, a glass or similar container

Olympus Mons

Volcanoes scale models**
Home experiments; modelling; measurement;
– large sheet, smaller sheets like napkins or tea towels, pole/stick, some shorter sticks, tape measure

**adult supervision/help required

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