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Musica II: Torsion Drum, Buzzer, Maraca, Chirper, Flute

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    Community Science Workshop Network

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Musica II: Torsion Drum, Buzzer, Maraca, Chirper, Flute

In this activity, learners use common household items to build musical instruments. This lesson guide includes step-by-step instructions for building five instruments: a torsion drum; buzzer; maraca; chirper; and flute. Basic tools including a drill and clamp are required. Use this activity to help learners explore elements of sound like vibration, sound waves, pitch, amplitude and volume.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
30 to 45 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$1 - $5 per student

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Lesson/Lesson Plan


Materials List (per student)

  • 1 Low cup, #1 recyclable plastic (can bend without breaking)
  • 2 Beads
  • String, kite
  • Heat shrink plastic to cover both ends of cup
  • Double-sided tape
  • 12in Dowel, 1/4in diameter
  • 1/2 Paint paddle
  • String, strong
  • 1 Rubber band, fat
  • 3in Dowel, 1/4in diameter
  • Black tape
  • File folder or thick paper
  • 2 Salsa cups
  • 2 Craft sticks
  • Duct tape
  • Beans and sand
  • 1 Film can with lid
  • String
  • Knife
  • Nail
  • 1 Straw
  • 1 Film can with lid (or 2 film cans without lids)
  • Hole punch
  • White or black tape
  • Drill
  • Drill platform
  • 15/64 in bit
  • C clamp
  • Scrap stick of wood
  • Blow dryer for torsion drum


  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
  • Life Sciences
    • Human Senses and Perception
      • Hearing
  • Physical Sciences
    • Vibration and Waves
      • Wave Properties
      • Sound

Informal Categories

  • Arts and Crafts
  • Music
  • Toys


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


Includes alignment to state and/or national standards

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Watsonville Environmental Science Workshop


  • All Rights Reserved, Watsonville Environmental Science Workshop, ©2011


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