Friday, July 2, 2010

diy harmonica

harp playing
The other day my mother made these little diy harmonicas with my daughter. They were an instant hit! With a little blowing, they make a satisfying sound that can change pitch by moving the paper sliders up and down. Very cool.  We're going to make a bunch and have a backyard Forth of July parade with harmonicas for everyone! You might want to also... or at least gather the simple supplies so that you can make some whenever the need arises for a little music.
  • 3 rubber bands: 1 wide, 2 small
  • two popsicle sticks
  • two pieces of sturdy paper 3/4 inch wide and long enough for each side to fold over completely (ours was 2 1/4)
  • tape
  1. Gather materials.   
  2. Lay one stick on top of the other with the paper strips spaced like in the photo.  
  3. Fold over each piece of paper.
  4. Secure paper with a little tape. Tape shouldn't touch the sticks at all.
  5. Carefully slip out the bottom stick.
  6. Stretch the longer rubber band around the length of the top stick. Place the bottom stick directly under it and secure them both with the two smaller rubber bands.
Done! Blow and make some music!
harp tute
harp tute 2
harp tute 3

Have great weekend everyone! Pin It


  1. How cute! better than using a blade of grass like when I was a kid!

  2. Fun! We used to make them with a comb and a piece of wax paper!

  3. Just totally love this!!! We will definitely be making these this weekend!!! We will have to eat a whole bunch of ice lollies first - not as easy as you might think in the middle of winter!!! Lots of love - Enjoy your summer!!!

    I had no idea you could make these ;)
    I guess we'll try to make it one of these days....

  5. Brilliant idea.. Thank you for sharing, I'll try that with mine!

  6. I know some of my children will enjoy this. Thank you and happy 4th.
    Warm wishes, Tonya

  7. That is so clever! I've never seen anything like this and now I want to try it for myself! I would also like to link to this if you didn't mind, what a summer-perfect activity.

  8. We only recently learned to make these at Maker Faire. They called them "Sound Sandwiches", but we used a couple of snips of drinking straw in the ones we made there. There's a nice pdf instruction sheet that talks about the process of making the sound and changing the pitch here.

    Turned out to be a really good group activity with a load of kids too.

  9. Awesome! Can't wait to try this at our beach week (15 adults and 16 kids) next month! Thank you!

  10. Thank you so much for this awesome project! I work for a non-profit in Richmond, Ca and we have an annual music concert. I try to provide fun, musically themed activities for the kids and this worked perfectly!
    It was a little tough for the younger ones, but in general everyone enjoyed making these...even parents and older folks!

  11. I love simple brilliance! Can't wait to have a house full of harmonicas!

  12. We did this for our what's in a bag Thursday this summer!! Thanks for the idea! The kids loved them!

  13. Thanks so much! I did this with 90 kids for part of a camp program, and they loved it!

  14. hi maya
    my children and i enjoyed making these. and we thought we saw a raft craft on here too the other day. but i can't seem to find it...i remember it being colourful. we did find some wooden rafts...but that wasn't it...did we find it on your blog???

  15. Wow,thank you Maya,I also want to make this at home. But recently I have collected Suzuki harmonica at PIJ. I always feel amazing to have anything from there.

  16. We made these at my library last week. Thank you - everyone loved them!

    1. seriously,does anyone's not work? it was still fun though