How to Make a Rain Stick

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Kids age 7 and older will enjoy making this rain stick. Chilean legend says that the rain sound appeals to the rain gods, so don't use this by our house, please.

Things You'll Need

  • Cardboard Tubes
  • Duct Tape
  • Hot Glues
  • Dried Beans
  • Rice
  • Unpopped Popcorn
  • Contact Paper
  • Common Nails
  • Hammers
  • Use a pencil to draw a spiral beginning at one end of a cardboard tube and ending at the other. Don't follow the natural seam.

  • Hammer nails that are 1/4 inch shorter than the tube's diameter at 1/2-inch intervals along the spiral.

  • Cap one end of the tube. If it didn't come with caps, cut a piece of cardboard the same size as the hole and hot glue it securely to the end.

  • Put some unpopped popcorn, beads, dry beans, pebbles, seeds, gravel, rice or other dry filler into the tube.

  • Cover the open end with your hand and test the sound by turning it upside down.

  • Experiment with the amount of filler for a sound you like. When you're satisfied, put a cap on the open end.

  • Cover all of the nail heads with contact paper or masking or duct tape.

  • Decorate your rain stick. Try paints, torn paper or corrugated wrapping.

Tips & Warnings

  • Empty paper towel rolls are the easiest, but 2- to 2 1/2-inch postal tubes (24 inches long) make the best rain sticks. Make sure to get the plastic caps that go on the ends. You can also use carpet tubing, which you may need to drill before putting in the nails.
  • Don't limit yourself to one kind of filler. Try combinations for different effects.
  • Younger kids may be inclined to put the filler in their mouths.

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