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DIY Ocean Drum Craft for Kids

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Missing the beach and the sound of waves? Make your own DIY ocean drum craft instrument. Ocean drums, sometimes called wave drums, are fun for children of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme for kids.

The soothing sound of an ocean drum mimics the tide as the small beads slide around. The image of beads or other beachy items moving back and forth will grab your child’s attention while the sounds of the ocean drum can relax even adults.

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

DIY Ocean Drum Craft for Kids

You can create your own ocean drum at home with your kids to explore how they work and learn more through fun ocean activities. Creating homemade musical instruments is an excellent way to explore music with your little ones in a fun and creative way.

Keep reading to learn how you can build your own DIY ocean drum today.

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Ocean Drum Activities

This project was so much fun to explore and make! We played around with a few different options and in the end found that a few simple things we already had on hand were a perfect fit for this project.

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

Ocean Drum Circle Activity

Playing homemade ocean drum instruments with your little ones is an excellent way to work on important early learning skills.

Here are a few you can practice:

  • Impulse Control
  • Auditory Processing
  • Visual-Motor Integration Skills
  • Leadership Skills
  • Fine Motor Skills
  • Coordination

Experiment with impulse control and auditory processing with this fun idea:

Have your preschoolers sit in a circle or semi-circle (You can do this as a family if you do not have multiple preschoolers available). Be sure everyone has a homemade ocean drum to hold. Then, have the first person begin to play the drum. He can choose how he wants to play: shaking, tilting, tapping the sides, etc. 

Then, the person to the right imitates the way the first person is playing their ocean drum. This continues until everyone in the circle is playing together and imitating one another.

Finally, when play has made its way around the entire circle, the next person can choose a different method of play for everyone. 

As the circle moves and changes, children learn to lead by example, work together to create musical harmony, learn to wait for their turn, and practice auditory processing.

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

How to Build a DIY Ocean Drum

An ocean drum can be any size you wish. I like to make smaller ocean drums for smaller kiddos. Large drums are a lot of fun too, but sometimes it’s nice to have a musical instrument that fits their small hands perfectly. 

Traditional ocean drums have two transparent windows called “heads.” Between the two windows, the contents inside are visible. These contents roll around creating a sound that is remarkably similar to the sound of the ocean. 

Sometimes seeds, beads, pebbles, or other small round things are used inside the ocean drum. You can experiment with a variety of different objects and compare the sounds created by each item. Kids will have fun choosing the perfect object to place inside the drum.

I share step by step instructions for what we did for crafting our Ocean Drum below.

8 Benefits of Playing Instruments Together

There are countless benefits to teaching your child to play a musical instrument. However, you don’t necessarily have to spend lots of time or money investing in professional lessons and expensive instruments to inspire a love of music in your children. Homemade instruments made with love can inspire an equal or greater love of music and musical creativity. 

Check out these excellent benefits of playing instruments with your kids:

  1. Learning to play a musical instrument teaches kids patience.
  2. Caring for instruments (even homemade instruments) teaches kids responsibility.
  3. Playing instruments together is an excellent way to boost your child’s self-esteem.
  4. It’s a great way to explore other world cultures with your children.
  5. Playing instruments helps kids build coordination and motor skills.
  6. Because music has much in common with math, learning to play an instrument is a great way to help kids who struggle with math skills.
  7. Playing music together is a good way to help kids learn to express themselves in a way that doesn’t require a lot of language skills.
  8. Playing an instrument can help kids build social skills by giving them social currency, a valuable skill in society, to help them make friends in new or challenging situations. 

Homemade Musical Instruments

If your kids enjoy creating and playing ocean drums, you should try other DIY musical instruments. With a little work, you could create your own homemade orchestra at home!

DIY musical instruments kids can create at home:

Check out my ideas for creating a patriotic drum for the 4th of July, a water xylophone with beautiful colors, and music cards.

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

Montessori Music Lessons

With preschoolers, learning about musical instruments is easier when you begin the right way. As they say, an ounce of preparation is worth a pound of cure! 

Before you start teaching your preschoolers how to play instruments and appreciate music, consider getting a few fun musical instruments, some great music picture books, and good music.

Here are some of my favorite picture books about music for preschoolers:

Check out my musical instrument cards and what we include on our music shelves. I’ll give you a tip: Play silks are a great addition to music time!

Where did the ocean drum come from? 

Ocean Drums actually came from Nepal, a country in South Asia, a long way from the sea. Nepal is actually known for its mountain peaks… So you wouldn’t think of an ocean drum coming from there. The intention was, to imitate the sound of water. Which we think it definitely does that.

Ocean Drum Box

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

OCEAN DRUM CRAFT FOR KIDS INSTRUCTIONS

What you will need to make your Ocean Drum is in this picture below. However, I have it in a list form to print out towards the bottom of the page. Have Fun!

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

Supplies we used:

We used one medium parchment paper bag, about 14” by 10” and that worked well in the box we used-you could always make one a parchment paper or wax paper bag of sheets and tape them together on all sides.

A box… we tried a few and most worked really well. Our Favorite was a gift box (from Shutterfly) you could certainly use a similarly shaped box like a small clean pizza box or cereal box.

  • 1 cup of dried chickpeas/garbanzo beans
  • ½ cup of dry, uncooked rice
  • Tape

*The parchment paper bag adds a slight sound to the lovely waves and helps to keep the contents contained, but this project can certainly be done without the parchment paper bag if you want to skip that step.

To assemble:

Add the rice and dried beans to the bag and fold or tape it shut, just make sure it is secured.

Place the bag in a box where it can lay flat and have the full range for the chickpeas and rice to slide evenly from one side to the other.

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers
Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

If you feel it would be helpful for your kiddos, tape the box shut.

That’s it! Play around with the speed at which you move the box around to find the rhythm of the ocean

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

OCEAN STEM ACTIVITY

If you want to create different styles of ocean drums you can allow your children to create their own drum using the materials they prefer.

Ideas for supplies and a variety of instructions

  1. Get a sturdy box like a pizza box, a flat mailing box from the post office, or any similar box.
  2. Next, create a window for watching the beads or seeds inside as they move. Find clear strong plastic and cut it to create a window. Draw a slightly smaller square or rectangle on the inside your ocean drum box and cut it out. Tape the plastic window securely inside the box. 
  3. Then, fill your drum. Small, round objects like marbles, pebbles, or seeds sound the most like the ocean. However, your children can use their imagination to choose what to put inside. Encourage your child to find the objects she thinks will sound best.
  4. Once your child has chosen the perfect filler, seal the ocean drum. Cover with packing tape to keep the drum’s contents from spilling.
  5. Finally, consider painting or decorating the outside of your drum for even more fun! 

Don’t forget to come back and share your experiences building a DIY ocean drum with your kids and share stories from your homemade drum circle.

I love reading about how much fun you’re having exploring and learning with your kids in the comment section.

DIY Ocean Drum for Kids

DIY Ocean Drum for Kids

Make a DIY Ocean Drum a homemade instument for kids

Ingredients
  • We used one medium parchment paper bag about 14” by 10” and that worked well in the box we used-you could always make one a parchment paper or wax paper bag of sheets and tape them together on all sides.
  • A box… we tried a few and most worked really well. This was a gift box you could certainly use a similarly shaped box like a small clean pizza box or cereal box.
  • 1 cup of dried chickpeas/garbanzo beans
  • ½ cup of dry uncooked rice
  • Tape
Instructions
  1. Add the rice and dried beans to the bag and fold or tape it shut, just make sure it is secured.
  2. Place the bag in a box where it can lay flat and have the full range for the chickpeas and rice to slide evenly from one side to the other.
  3. If you feel it would be helpful for your kiddos, tape the box shut.
Recipe Notes

This project was so much fun to explore and make! We played around with a few different options and in the end found that a few simple things we already had on hand were a perfect fit for this project. *The parchment paper bag adds a slight sound to the lovely waves and helps to keep the contents contained, but this project can certainly be done without the parchment paper bag if you want to skip that step.

Play around with the speed at which you move the box around to find the rhythm of the ocean

Studies have shown that if you like this, you will also love the following articles. I have pulled them together for you right here!

Ocean Activities

Make your own DIY ocean drum craft. Ocean drums are a fun homemade musical instrument for kids of all ages. This is a perfect ocean activity or a fun idea for a beach theme too. Learn the Benefits of Playing Instruments and see other Music activities for preschoolers

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