Tube Zither

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In this activity, learners explore sound by constructing tube zithers, stringed instruments from Southeast Asia and the South Pacific. Use this activity to demonstrate principles of sound including vibration, pitch, tone, frequency, and volume. Note: this activity requires the use of a drill, not included in the cost of materials. [Activity is publicly available through a web crawler capture on]

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
45 to 60 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$5 - $10 per student

Age Range:
Ages 6 - 18

Resource Types:
Activity, Lesson/Lesson Plan


Materials List (per student)

  • 1 cardboard tube around 1.5"
  • 1 6' 40 lb. test fishing line
  • 4 1" wood screws
  • 4 small eye screws
  • 12 small wood pieces
  • drill
  • hot glue gun
  • wood file
  • pencil


  • Life Sciences
    • Human Senses and Perception
      • Hearing
  • Physical Sciences
    • Vibration and Waves
      • Wave Properties
      • Wave Motion
      • Sound
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations

Informal Categories

  • Arts and Crafts
  • Music


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


Components that are part of this resource:

Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Oakland Discovery Centers


  • All rights reserved, Oakland Discovery Centers, 2012

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