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Waterbottle Membranophone


Source Institutions

    The Exploratorium

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Waterbottle Membranophone

In this activity, you'll use a straw, a water bottle and a paper tube to make an instrument that's very much like a saxophone. The activity, which teaches students about sound, vibration, and pitch, includes three short online videos: Introduction, Step-by-Step Instructions, and What's Going On. Also available: a concept map and a "Going Further" document that suggests variations on this activity.

Quick Guide


Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
10 to 30 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
1 cent - $1 per student

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Type:
Activity

Language:
English

Materials List (per student)


  • a clean, empty water bottle, any size (bottles with ridges are best)
  • scissors
  • utility knife (for adults only; children should use scissors)
  • latex, rubber, or vinyl gloves (or a balloon, though it’s harder to work with)
  • rubber band
  • hole punch
  • a straw
  • construction paper (acetate or card stock works too)

Subjects


  • Physical Sciences
    • Vibration and Waves
      • Sound

Informal Categories


  • Music
  • Toys

Audience


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • hear
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Links STEM to other topics of interest such as arts and humanities
  • Involves hands-on or lab activities

Other


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access

By:

  • The Exploratorium

Source Collection:

  • Science After School Consumer's Guide

Rights:

  • All Rights Reserved, The Exploratorium, ©2007

Funding Source:

  • National Science Foundation

Related Video:

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