- What do you know about how sound is made?
- Where will you get the containers to make your instruments?
- For some of the activities, you will be in small groups. How will you form your group?
Activity #1: Dancing water:
- Cover the subwoofer with plastic and pour water into the plastic.
- Turn the subwoofer on and watch the pattern on the water.
- What happens when you change the volume? The frequency?
Activity # 2: Different vibrations, different sounds:
- Try to make different sounds with the instruments you have available. What is vibrating to make the sound in this instrument?
- Think about other sounds you hear around you during the day. What is vibrating to create those sounds?
Activity # 3: Water Orchestra:
- Use a spoon, pen, marker or other stick-like object to tap the glasses when they are empty. Add some water to the glasses and tap them again. What do you notice? How is the sound different?
- What happens if you change the amount of water in the glass?
- Explore different amounts of water and different sounds. Can you play a song on your water instrument?
Activity # 4: Rubber band guitar:
- Use rubber bands of different sizes to create a guitar out of a box.
- What do you notice about the sound of each rubber band?
- Create a guitar that has five (or more) different pitches.
- What do you know now that you did not know before?
- How did you change the sounds made by the glasses? How did you change the sounds made by the rubber bands?
- How else do you think you can build new musical instruments?
- What elements of STEM were in this adventure? Science? Technology? Engineering? Mathematics?
- What did you like about this adventure? What did you not like about it? How would you do this adventure differently?
- Subwoofer or large speaker
- Plastic wrap
- Musical instruments (Brass, string, and percussion instruments if possible)
- 5 glass bottles or glasses for every group of 4–5 youth
- Rubber bands of different thicknesses
- Plastic containers, shoeboxes or other cardboard boxes; one for each person
- Sticks to play the glasses (spoons, pens, pencils, etc.)
Keep it Simple
- Find a way to make your own instrument out of household materials. Maybe you’ll make egg carton shakers, or a plastic bucket drum.
Take it Further
- Arrange to attend a concert or watch a video of an orchestra. Can you hear the different kinds of instruments? How do the different sounds make you feel?