Free Things To Do with Kids: Family Orchestra


Looking for free things to do with the kids that won’t cost anything?  How about a Family Orchestra?! All you need are either some real instruments or else gather together a few items from around the house and have fun with your children making “instruments” to play together!

If you have instruments then gather them together and practise a few simple tunes together.  Why not record “the band’s” first song so everyone can enjoy watching it afterwards!
If you don’t have instruments (but even a toy keyboard can be pressed into action here!) then here are some easy simple ones you can make:

1. Jar Xylophone

You Will Need
  • 5-8 jars
  • Water
  • A spoon
What to Do
  1. Fill the jars with different levels of water.  Lower sounds will come from jars with more water in them, higher sounds from jars with less water in them.
  2. To play, gently strike the jars with your spoon.  (take care not to hit too hard!)

2. Paper Towel Trumpet

You Will Need
  • 1 paper towel roll
  • some waxed paper or baking parchment
  • a rubber band
  • a pen
What to Do
  1. Cover one end of the paper towel roll with waxed paper, secure it with a rubber band.
  2. Punch a row of holes along one side of the roll with the tip of the pen.
  3. To play, sing a tune into the open end of the horn.

3. Pot Cover Cymbals

You Will Need
  • 2 matching pot covers
  • Ribbon (or string or yarn)
What to Do
  1. Tie the ribbon (string/yarn) around the handles of the pot covers.
  2. Strike them together to play your cymbals.

4. Coffee Tin Drum

You Will Need
  • Empty coffee (or other) tin with plastic lid
  • 2 pencils
What to Do

Beat the pencils on the lid of your tin to “play your drum”.

5. Buzzing comb

You Will Need
  • A comb
  • Some tissue paper
What to Do
Fold a piece of tissue paper over the tooth edge of the comb and hum through the tissue paper.

6. Shoebox Guitar

You Will Need
  • 1 empty shoe box
  • Rubber bands
  • Ruler or stick
What to Do
  1. Take off the box lid and stretch the rubber bands around the box.
  2. Attach the ruler/stick to the back of the box at one end for the guitar arm.
  3. Strum or pluck the rubber bands to “play your guitar”.
Related: Lots more ideas for kids in 50 Fun Indoor Activities for Kids & 100 Free Things to do with Kids 

We’re always looking for great ideas for Free Things to Do with Kids so share your ideas below and we’ll share them with other parents!

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