Make an ukulele from household items such as a tissue box.

What You Need:

• Empty tissue box
• Rubber bands
• Masking tape
• Jumbo crayons or washable markers

What To Do:

1. Talk with your child about how stringed musical instruments, such as the ukulele, produce sound.
2. Have your child decorate an empty tissue box with markers.
3. Stretch rubber bands around the box. Tape them down on the bottom of the box to hold them in place.
4. Show him how to strum or pluck the rubber bands to make music and how to make different sounds by holding down the rubber bands in different locations.
5. Encourage him to experiment with sounds and make up his own songs. Here’s an example:

Ukulele, Ukulele

Ukulele, ukulele,
What fun to strum.
Ukulele, ukulele,
Now you’re my drum.
(Gently tap the ukulele: tap, tap-tap, tap, tap-tap)
Ukulele, ukulele
What say you now?
Ukulele, ukulele
A wela ka hao.
(Gently tap ukulele: tap, tap-tap, tap, tap-tap)

From Hawaiian Rainbows
A recording by Margaret Young Pang ©1988

Use an empty paper towel tube to make a handle for your ukulele. Have your child decorate the paper tube with markers. Cut a circle the size of the paper tube on one end of the empty tissue box. Insert the paper tube partway into the hole. Secure the handle to the box with masking tape.