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Boomwhackers in the classroom

Boomwhackers are colorful, hollow plastic tubes of various lengths. They can produce sounds of different pitches when struck against surfaces, for instance. Boomwhackers can be played in many different ways, resulting in a variety of sounds. How this is done and how you can use boomwhackers in elementary school music classes is explained in this article.

How do I introduce boomwhackers in class? Rules and ways of playing

If you use boomwhackers in primary school music lessons, you have made a great choice! Your pupils can produce sounds on the instruments quickly and easily without needing years of musical experience. A quick sense of achievement and the fun of music are guaranteed.

Before you get started, here are some practical tips for you:

Boomwhacker rules

Before you start, you should agree on a stop signal with your class and discuss three rules that are important when playing with boomwhackers.

The stop signal:

“When I hold my boomwhacker with one hand across my head, you grab your boomwhacker with both hands and put it behind your head on your shoulders so that the boomwhacker is no longer played.”

The three rules:
  1. Holding my Boomwacker above my head, you take your play-stop position.
  2. You don’t hold the Boomwhacker in front of your eyes, nose or mouth.
  3. You only play with the Boomwhackers on your own body or on the floor.
Introduction of the Boomwhacker

Let the pupils playfully try out different ways of playing. It is important that they become familiar with the instruments and find out for themselves what sounds and tones they can produce.

Afterwards, you can show them some possible ways of playing. Here are some examples of how the boomwhackers can be played:

In the lesson series The String Instruments – with Arcangelo Corelli you will find a whole learning unit on boomwhackers (unit 4). The children invent different ways of playing with boomwhackers, learn to play a rhythm with them, learn different tempo indications while playing and classify them correctly and follow the indications of a conductor’s child in a tempo game.

Have fun with the boomwhackers in music lessons!

PS: By the way, Boomwhacker is pronounced “Buuumwäker”.