Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Feel the Beat!

Drumming and tapping out the beat is often our first response when hearing a song.  A catchy tune plays on the radio and our fingers start rapping on the steering wheel.

We can feel the rhythm.

It seems so natural.

And it should.

Our bodies are full of rhythms:

-heart beat


-breathing in and out

-hormone cycles

Rhythm is a part of who we are.

That is why drumming can be so much fun for children.

They love to tap away with rhythm sticks or pound with their hands on a drum.

Not all children can feel the beat.  For these children you will need to tap the beat on their lesg or backs.  They need help translating what they hear into what they feel.


Practicing rhythms at home can be very inexpensive!

Rhythm sticks can be found for a few dollars a set.  I have even used unsharpened pencils when sticks were unavailable.

Thighs make great drums!  I really enjoy the sound of hands on thighs and they don’t cost a dime. Just don’t tap too hard!

beginning music, homemade drums, music therapy, rhythms, strings keys and melodies
Empty oatmeal containers, large (not individual size) yogurt or margarine containers with lids make great drums.  You can even decorate them!

Pots and pans can be noisy but fun!  Be careful what you pick.  My stainless steal bowls don’t look smooth and pretty anymore!


Try tapping: 

Famous songs

Nursery rhymes

Syllables of words

Put on a CD of any type music (except chanting and New Age relaxation music) and find the beat!

Skills learned:

Gross Motor



Below is a video I made with my daughter playing The Drum Song.  So get out your yogurt tubs and follow along!



  1. Nice! Your videos are so helpful. I practiced following along with the beat. I plan to have my eight year old twins try this after school. Their ten year old brother has been playing the drums since he was five and does very well. He teaches his mom a little, but I struggle with keeping up the rhythm and using two hands. I'd like to help my children get music early. Their dad is a musician. He helps. I enjoy finding resources on this site to help me and find ways to teach our children a little too.

    1. Thanks Michelle! I hope your children enjoy drumming along.

  2. You ideas are fun, practical, considerate of parents and teachers, and well explained. Your posts would make a great book. Carolyn

    1. Thank you Carolyn! I love the idea of a book. Wow! That would be really cool. What a wonderful compliment coming from such an experienced, educated person!