This was so awesome I couldn’t help but post. A little over a month ago after some thought I had a 3rd grade class start to use my left over office supplies to build their own recycled percussion instruments. It was a great way to get rid of office supplies and I had an extra 20 minutes a week with these kiddos so this was a perfect activity.
What I had to work with:
- Masking tape
- Duct Tape
- A big box of folders, paper clips, rubber bands, and scrap paper
How long it took– 3 weeks
- Week 1 was explaining and starting the build
- Week 2 was continuing to build
- Week 3 was getting together and jamming on our new instruments!
What we were learning about– Instrument families and this was a focus on strings and percussion instruments.
- We used the Quaver Curriculum with a focus on the 2nd grade lesson 25
- We also watched the Quaver Fretted Instruments and Percussion episodes and used the classrooms for extra activities.
- We watched a few key scenes in STOMP Out loud!
- We also did the Strings Savannah and Percussion Paradise areas of the Young Persons Guide to the Orchestra click adventure
The kids had the lead on most of this. They knew what a string instrument qualified as and used rubber bands to create different pitches, and they knew what a percussion instrument qualified as and created instruments that could be hit, shaker, or scraped!
With the final jam I had gone into QComposer at www.QuaverMusic.com ahead of time and had created two different 4/4 rhythms ahead of time. We played both one at a time, then divided up into ensembles and played together, then switched parts.
After, kids got to bring their instruments home!
It was a great ending activity to learning about instrument families, showed students you can make an instrument out of anything, and was a great hands on activity that had the students learn by MAKING something!