Make a Drum n Shaker

A pile of balloons

What you'll need

    • Balloons
  • Old cans (formula, beans)

  • Small found objects like stones, seeds or gumnuts

  • Scissors

  • Packing tape (sticky/ masking)

  • Coloured paper 

What is the learning in this activity?

Ages: 4 - 8 years

Purpose: Encourages listening skills and the ability to transition between loud and quiet activity. Sensory play develops all of the senses, enhances their connection to the natural environment, and allows them to release and recognise strong feelings. 

Let's play

1. Put some stones/gumnuts or other small items you’ve collected outdoors into the can and then stretch the balloons around the can. (An adult should do this part as the can might have a sharp edge).

2. Tape the edge of the balloon to the can. We double layered the balloons for durability and cut the top layer for a fun effect.

3. Decorate the drum with pieces of colored paper. Or decorate by colouring or painting.

4. Now you have a drum! You can use your fingers and hands or find different objects to use as drumsticks.

5. Use different sized cans and different amounts and types of filling to make different noise effects when drumming.

Drum n Shaker

Let's talk 

Qs - Can the balloons stretch? How does the drum make sound?

Extension - Help children to learn about themselves and their world by looking, listening, and feeling, touching, moving and responding to different stimuli—drink bottle, play dough. Use sticks to play the drum.

We'd love to see your creations and home based play! Share with us on Facebook at @yrfamilies #YarraRangesPlay
You can contact the YRC Family & Children’s Services team on 1300 368 333 or by email at

Print the fact sheet(PDF, 326KB)