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Longfellow School

Oak Park, Illinois
Drum Tree

by Alex S.

Materials: wood broomstick, wood, metal cans and tins of various sizes and shapes, an aluminum roasting pan, hooks, and dowels.

How to make sound:

Play the cans with the dowels. You will hear various sounds from each can because of the differences in shape and size. I can change the volume by how hard or soft I hit it. To change the pitch, it depends where I hit it and which drum I hit. You can get special effects on the roasting pan by scraping the ridges with a dowel!



How I Made The Drum Tree:

At first I knew I wanted to make a drum, but I wasn't sure how to do it. I didn't want to bring in just a can and a stick, so I talked to my parents about what I might do. After awhile my Dad had a great idea. He remembered an old broom handle that was in our garage and said we could use it to make a stand to hang drums on. Then my Mom said we could call it a drum tree. My Mom and I drew up a plan of what it would look like.

After we got the broom handle, we looked for two pieces of wood to make a stand shaped like an "X". Then my Dad cut joints with a saw and used a chisel to hollow them out so they would fit together. Then I sanded the pieces of wood until they were very smooth. Making the stand was the hardest part. When we finished chiseling and sanding we glued the two pieces together, adding nails for extra strength. Then we used the broom handle to trace a circle in the middle of the stand. My Dad drilled a bunch of holes in the circle until we could pound the broom handle into the hole. We glued and nailed it into place. Then we waited a day.

The next step was to look for cans and other things that made different sounds when you hit them. After we decided what things to put on the drum tree we had to figure out the best ways to attach them to the stand. We found most of the stuff we needed in the basement, where my Dad keeps his tools. We used large metal hooks to attach the cans.