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Homemade musical instrument: Shaker

Making your own homemade shaker is a quick, easy and effective way of introducing children to percussion instruments and helping them to explore the sounds of music. As well as immersing children into the music-making process, this fun-filled classroom project also teaches them how to be creative with household items and recyclable materials.


You will need:

  • Containers e.g. plastic, tin, glass, wood, etc.
  • Dried rice, lentils, beans, etc.
  • Coloured/ wrapping paper, stickers, glitter, paint, etc.



  1. Find any dry food around the kitchen that makes noise when shaken e.g. dried beans, lentils, rice, popcorn.
  1. Look for different sized shakers. A soup container, a tin can and an old glass jar are some common household items that would make for good shakers.
  1. Don’t be shy when decorating your shaker; get creative by adding some stickers, glitter, wrapping paper and lots of colour!
  1. Once your shakers are ready, you can begin to experiment with different sounds. Mix and match your contents, and make comparisons between the sounds of the plastic, tin and glass shakers.


Our team of dedicated, professional tutors find that these shakers act as a great teaching tool when used in conjunction with the activities in our lesson plans. To benefit from these teaching tools and avail of our complementary lesson plans, please sign up to our website by simply submitting your name and email address at the bottom of this page.


Watch this video for more information about making your own shaker: