If you’re looking for some simple craft ideas to try with your kids over the summer holidays, why not try some basic musical instruments? You can craft instruments out of almost any old packaging or unwanted items, and once they’re finished, they can provide hours of fun and opportunities for your kids to start creating their own music. Have a go at making these 3 homemade musical instruments which will show your kids how much fun reusing and recycling can be!
A string box is a great way to introduce small children to how guitars and other stringed instruments work, and can be fun to make and play using just a few household items. Just take a sturdy box, such as a plastic storage box or biscuit tin, and stretch a number of different sized rubber bands around it, across the open end. Your string box might be no Gibson Les Paul, but should have an authentic ethnic sound. Try experimenting with different boxes and different sized rubber bands to find an ideal sound, then see what tunes you can play.
The maracas are some of the most recognizable and iconic percussion instruments and a fun addition to your homemade musical instruments orchestra! You can make your own set with 2 water bottles, some small, rattly objects and some toilet roll tubes. Fill your bottles with your chosen filling and screw on the caps. To create the handles, fix the cardboard tubes in place over the caps with electrical tape, and fully wrap them up. Your maracas will have different sounds depending on what you use to fill them- choose sand or salt for quiet sounds, or dried beans or pasta for noisier instruments. By using a range of different contents, you can make a full set to play.
A guiro is a percussion instrument played in a scraping manner, where a stick is dragged along a series of small ridges on a wooden tube. You can improvise a guiro using an empty water bottle with ridges. Fill the water bottle with beads, beans or other small items to make your guiro rattle as well as scrape. A guiro can also be made by wrapping a cardboard tube with string or rubber bands, glueing on beads or even sticking on sand, before decorating with paint. A chopstick or pencil can be used as a scraper. Try varying the shape, size and material of the guiro’s tube to produce different sounds, then use it to play along with some of your kid’s favourite songs.
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