Homemade Musical Instruments

User Rating Would you like to rate this activity?

Recommend for: Cognitive, Gross Motor, Fine Motor, Baby, Toddler,


Summary: Children love to make noise! Musical instruments are a great way for children to experiment with different sounds. So why not make your musical instruments at home? Here are a few great homemade instrument ideas you can make with your child today.

The great thing about homemade toys is you can create them using simple items you have around the house.

Your child can be actively involved in the process of creating their own musical instruments, which makes the activity even more fun. They will be so proud and excited once theyl see the end result!

Here are some homemade musical instrument ideas you can make with your child at home or at playgroup:

Shakers and rain sticks

All you need are:

  • Cardboard tube (a big paper towel roll or a small toilet paper roll)
  • Sand, rice, dried lentils, dirt, small pebbles (depending on the sounds you want your shaker to make)
  • A small piece of baking paper
  • Sticky tape or decorative tape
  • Decorations

How to make it:

  • Put the baking sheet over one end of the cardboard tube and secure it with a rubber band (There...  now you have a drum on one side)
  • Add about three tablespoons of rice (or anything else you have around the house) inside the tube (for a small tube you’ll only need about one tablespoon)
  • Seal off the other end of your cardboard tube with baking paper and rubber band
  • If you want to use your shaker for a longer period of time, it’s best to seal your tube with sticky tape for safety reasons
  • Your child can decorate their instrument by drawing stars, flowers or with other drawings. You can write their name on it (or let them give it a try). Encourage your child to personalise it with their unique style.

How can your children play with their new musical instrument?

  • Include your children in the process of creating their musical instruments. This will help with their motor skills and hand-eye coordination. Plus, they’ll feel a sense of achievement and pride for having made something with their own little hands.
  • Depending on what you choose to put inside your shaker, it will make a different sound. Make a few shakers with different things inside them and encourage your child to observe and listen to the different sounds they make.
  • Notice how different hand movements produce different sounds. For example, if you move it slowly you have a rain stick, but if you shake it with both hands, you have a shaker.
  • Encourage and help your child to create a song out of those different sounds.

Tip: You can also make shakers from an old plastic bottle. Put some sesame seeds in it (paint the sesame seeds with food colouring to make it more fun) and decorate your bottle with colourful tape. The great thing about these bottle shakers is you can easily seal them by putting the lid on.

Homemade drums

We all have pots and pans we don’t use anymore occupying precious space in our cupboards.

Take them out and let’s transform them into fun musical instruments.

All you need are:

  • Old pots and pans (it can be an old baking tin, a bamboo or plastic bowl)
  • Paint
  • Decorations

How to make it:

  • Find an old pan you’re not using anymore
  • Paint it in a fun colour
  • Encourage your child to decorate it and make it their own. You can use paint, glitter, stickers or colourful tape. Be creative!

How can your play with their new drum?

  • Turn it upside down and you have a drum
  • Explore with your child the different types of sounds you can make with it. Play with your palms, fingers, nails, fists or you can scratch on it.
  • Find a drumstick in the form of a wooden spoon and make some drum noises.

You can make fun sounds with things you have around the house. And if they break it’s not the end of the world.

Your child doesn’t need shiny toys, they need homemade toys they can make themselves.

Happy playing!

Activity from Cat Sewell - Playgroup NSW's PlayThinker In Residence


There's no review / rating for this activity yet

Playgroups looking for you

Click here to find out More + Featured Activities

Check out our Playgroups who are looking for families to join them.

Play Activities

Click here to find out More + Featured Activities

Children love playing with balls of all shapes and sizes. And with good reason: balls are great for group play, organised sports or just playing by yourself. They are also suitable for a variety of age groups (from babies to children and even adults).

Featured Article

Click here to find out More + Featured Activities

Mothercraft nurse, Chris Minogue, answers one of Kinderling Radio listener’s question on how to keep their child safe on the ground.

Looking for a Playgroup?

Find PlaygroupSearch Now!

Supported By