Caves Facts for Kids – 5 Captivating Facts about Caves

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Updated on: Educator Review By: Michelle Connolly

Have you ever seen a cave?! Let’s discover five captivating caves facts for kids.

Caves Facts for Kids Fact Number 1: Solution Caves Are The Most Common Caves

Most caves are called solution caves or karst caves. Solution caves form in places where a type of rock called limestone is found. Limestone is a soft rock that breaks down easily in water. As water flows through small cracks in the limestone, the limestone dissolves. These small cracks get bigger and bigger. Over a long time these cracks become big enough for people to enter.

Caves Facts for Kids
A photo of a cave showing the dissolving limestone

Caves Facts for Kids Fact Number 2: Caves Have Stalagmites and Stalactites

After a solution cave is formed, water continues to drip into it. Minerals in the water fall on the ceiling and floor of the cave. Over time the minerals build up and harden into large formations. Those that hang down from the ceiling are called stalactites. They look like icicles. Stalagmites point up from the floor. They usually grow directly under stalactites. To remember the difference, think of the “g” in stalagmites as the “ground” and the “c” in stalactites as the “ceiling”. Sometimes stalactites and stalagmites join together to form columns, which look like large pillars.

Caves Facts for Kids Fact Number 3: The Largest Cave in The World Is Located in The USA

The three longest caves recorded in the world are Mammoth Cave in Kentucky, USA which is over 650 km long. The second largest is the Sistema Sac Actun in Mexico, which is 318 km long. The last one is the Jewel Cave in South Dakota, USA, and it is over 265 km. Mammoth Cave is larger than the Sistema Sac Actun and Jewel Cave combined! If you were to lie Mount Everest down beside it, Mammoth Cave would be about 75 times longer. The maximum depth a cave can reach underground is about 3,000 metres. After 3,000 metres, the cave would collapse from the pressure of the rocks.

Caves Facts for Kids LearningMole
Caves Facts for Kids: Orange and brown cave

Caves Facts for Kids Fact Number 4: Early Humans Lived in Caves

Caves have been used right throughout history as a shelter for humans, for burials, and religious sites too. Over the years many ancient paintings, artefacts and ancient treasures have been found in caves around the world. Caves wouldn’t have been the most comfortable place to live but it was dry. Today you won’t find humans living  in caves but you will find some animals. You’ll find bats, cave crickets, cave spiders and bears in caves today.

Caves Facts for Kids Fact Number 5: Caves Can Be Underwater

Did you know that caves can be underwater, these caves are known as sea caves. Sea caves are formed from erosion caused by waves. They can be formed along the ocean coast and lakeshores where water impacts cliff edges. Many people swim, dive and kayak through these caves which are beautiful inside. They are often found near a beach. It is important to always be careful of the tide when inside a sea cave as when tides rise it may be difficult to get out.

Caves Facts for Kids LearningMole
People on boat under cave

We hope you enjoyed learning more things about caves as much as we loved teaching you about them. Now that you know how majestic these caves are, you can move on to learn about other climate and weather stuff like: Oceans, Rocks, Rivers, Mountains and Trees.

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