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Instant Orchestra

You can make musical instruments out of recyclables and items from around the house! Children can explore different sounds and accompany their favourite songs and rhymes as they discover different uses for familiar items. Making music a daily part of your child's life is a great way to Comfort, Play with and Teach them!

You will need:

  • A plastic bottle filled with some water
  • Film canisters partly filled with different things (i.e. rice, popping corn, salt)
  • An ice cream container and two wooden spoons
  • Two aluminium pie pans
  • Two small smooth stones
  • Two paper towel rolls (for tapping together or to sing/speak into)
  • Fingers for snapping, hands for clapping, thighs for patting, feet for tapping
  • Voices for singing, rhyming, chanting, humming, whispering…

Safety Precautions for Infants and Toddlers
Ensure that the lids of containers like bottles and film canisters are glued on tightly so that the contents remain inside. Wooden spoons should be cut shorter for little hands, and sanded smooth to protect your child's eyes and mouth. Avoid the use of smaller items like stones, as these could be choking hazards. When an instrument wears out or breaks, discard it and make a new one. Always put safety first!

Comfort, Play & Teach™ Message

Comfort: Children enjoy hearing and singing familiar songs again and again. Younger children are soothed by the sound of their parents' voices. The mastery that older children gain from repeating tunes like 'Twinkle Twinkle' or rhymes like 'One, Two, buckle my Shoe' builds their confidence in their abilities.

Play: As children listen to music, sing or recite rhymes, they can practice motor skills required for grasping and manipulating instruments. They discover that they can create sounds with various things, and even use their own voices and bodies for music making. Parents can encourage these kinds of explorations by making instruments with their children, sharing the songs of their childhood and creating music together!

Teach: Children learn so much by making music - from comparing sounds, to remembering the words to songs, sometimes even making up their own! They begin to feel the beat and to make connections between the rhythm of language and of music. By playing the instruments loudly then softly, quickly then slowly, they learn some basic music concepts through natural exploration.

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