During our calendar time, we always have a time for songs and playing musical instruments. It’s one of Luke and Lilah’s favorite parts of calendar time, and they really get into it! I’ve been impressed by how much their rhythm has improved just from this simple activity, and I think it’s also had a big impact on their ability to hear the sounds in words, which in turn, is a BIG part of early literacy and beginning reading. For our music time, we have a whole basket filled with various music making tools, but some of our favorites are homemade: like our rain stick sensory bottle, our xylophone, and our rhythm bells. Not only do the kids love these musical instruments, they were really fun crafts for us to make together as well!
Musical Instrument Crafts for Kids
We have made several musical instrument crafts. The first we made was a sensory bottle rain stick. It’s now about a year old, but still works like the day we made it. My youngest especially loves this one and plays with it at least for a minute or two on most days. It makes such a soothing sound! You can read all the directions for making it here: DIY Sensory Bottles: Rain Stick.
Just recently, we were given the opportunity to review a new Kiwi Crate: Making Music, which was created in partnership with Carnegie Hall. I knew it’d be a big hit with Luke and Lilah based on the past Kiwi Crate we had done. They love it from the minute they get special mail delivered to our doorstep, and they can’t wait to open the box to see what’s inside!
The Making Music crate gave us the opportunity to create a xylophone and two rhythm bell bracelets / anklets. I love the teamwork my two used to get the work done!
Here’s our finished xylophone:
My favorite part about the xylophone is that after you have the whole instrument put together, you can craft your own song and learn to play it.
It’s done in a VERY kid-friendly way and both of my kids loved writing their own song. They practiced it over and over until they could play it well!
I have to admit I was very impressed with the xylophone craft!
The second activity in the Making Music Kiwi Crate was rhythm bells. There are materials to make both a bracelet and an anklet, or if you’re using one kit for two kids like we were, there are enough materials so that each kid can make their own! Phew!
The kids colored their beads. This proved a difficult task for little fingers as the beads wanted to roll away, but we found that by sliding the beads onto a colored pencil, they were much easier to control! Then the kids strung up their colored beads and bells onto an elastic string, which was a super fine motor activity that required careful concentration!
After the kids got their bells on, we turned on a kids’ Pandora radio station on the iPad and they danced and hopped and jumped and shook and ran along with the music for quite awhile. Talk about a great gross motor activity!
We left the new homemade musical instruments out for a few days where they continued to receive lots of kid attention, and we have now added them to our musical instruments basket for our calendar time activities. I just love seeing the kids choosing the instruments they made over some of the store bought ones we have! I love that they see value in their work!
Kiwi Crate makes kits mailed to your home in themes like art, science, crafts, and more for kids ages 3-7. They offer monthly subscriptions, single crates like the Making Music one we tried out, party favors, DIY materials, and gift subscriptions. You can also see some more sample crates.
If you haven’t tried making musical instruments with your kids, I highly suggest it! Kiwi Crate makes it easy to get started with their fun Making Music kit, or you can make some of your own from scratch, like our sensory bottle rain stick.
Need some more ideas? Check out Red Ted Art’s 15 Musical Instrument Crafts for kids!
Have you made musical instrument crafts with your kids?
I’d love for you to share them on the In Lieu of Preschool Facebook page!
Disclosure: I received the Making Music kit to review from Kiwi Crate for free. Included links are affiliate links. I only accept and review products on my blog that interest me, my family, and that I think would interest you, my readers. All opinions expressed on my blog are solely my own and are never influenced by compensation or free products.
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