This experiment explores moon craters – particularly those made by impact activity – and gathers clues about its age and surface composition.

Want to duplicate this experiment at home or in your classroom? Watch the video for an overview, gather the materials listed at the right, and follow the instructions below!

Required Materials

  • cocoa powder
  • chocolate chips
  • flour
  • baking dish
  • rocks
  • tinfoil

Step-By-Step Instructions

Step 1

Layer the flour (subsurface), chocolate chips (minerals), and cocoa (regolith) in the baking dish in that order to represent the three layers of the moon’s surface.

Step 2

Cover the small rocks of varying sizes that you’ve collected with tinfoil to represent asteroids and other materials that impact the moon’s surface.

Step 3

Drop and toss the rocks into your layered ingredients from different heights and angles. Note how distance and force impact the size and depth of the holes the rocks make, as well as the rays, or lines, that flow out from the hole. These indicate the direction and speed of impact. Overall, these clues tell us all kinds of important things about the moon, including it’s age!