STREAM Activity: Create Rhythm Sticks

Tap to the rhythm of your favorite song!

Activity best for children ages 4 and up

At any age, anyone can appreciate the marvelous melodies of music! From classical to pop, there’s a genre that’s bound to spark creativity of the mind. Not only is it good for the soul and a wonderful way to have a dance party, but it’s incredibly useful in both brain and motor skill development! With this craft, we will be making rhythm sticks.

A rhythm stick is a very simple percussion instrument used to help students with hand-eye coordination, improve gross motor skills, and help children identify beat and- you guessed it- rhythm in song. Think drumsticks without the drums involved! They are fun, easy to make, and all over so beneficial for those that get to use them.

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Popsicle sticks

Optional: markers

Guiding Questions:

What are some places in nature we see rhythm and music?

How can we make a pattern with our craft?


Step 1

Start by gathering your materials!

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Step 2

Cut a 1 ½ – 2 foot piece of string. Tie the string to one end of the popsicle stick to make it easier for the next step! (Optional: If desired, this is when you can use a marker to color the popsicle stick before tying on the string!)

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Step 3

After tying the knot, wrap the string around the body of the stick. Once it reaches the end, tie a knot off at the end to assure it stays on. Cut off any excess string. (Feel free to mix it up and do more than one thing. You can make any kind of patterns you’d like with different colors!)

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Step 4

Ta-da! You’ve got yourself your very own home-made rhythm sticks.

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How to use:

Take one stick in each hand and make sure to have a firm grip. Then you can hit them together! You can pick a pattern to try, or a song to hit them along too. If desired, you can also hit them against a hard surface for a little challenge!

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Grown Ups-Are you looking for more ways to extend your child’s learning? Check out these extension activities to build upon today’s STREAM activity!

Reading Connections

I Got the Rhythm by Connie Schofield-Morrison

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Real World Connections

Music is so important for child development! Music can help our brains and our bodies learn how to work together. Dancing and drumming build both gross and fine motor skills. Make a song with your little one and put on a show for the family!

You can also explore the sounds of nature using rhythm sticks! Take a walk outside and see what amazing sounds you can make!