Lollipop Stick Harmonica

Learn how vibrations carry sound and make your own lollipop stick harmonica! Music and science combine in this tuneful experiment. Making music is lots of fun, but it can be hard to understand how it works, this experiment will help you to understand how sound travels. Music and science go hand it hand, because sound is a scientific topic! Playing a musical instrument is a great way to help you understand how sound travels.

You will need:

  • 1 straw
  • Scissors – ask an adult to help when using scissors
  • 2 jumbo lollipop sticks
  • 1 big elastic band
  • 2 loom bands/small elastic bands

Method:

  • Stretch the big elastic band over both ends of one lollipop stick.
  • Cut 2 small sections out of the straw that are as wide as the lollipop stick – an adult may need to assist.
  • Put the 2 straw sections under the elastic band, one on either end.lollipop stick harmonica
  • Place the other lollipop stick on top and secure at either end using the loom bands/small elastic bands.
  • Hold the “harmonica” to your lips, just like you  would with a real harmonica and blow gently.

The Science Bit:

When you blow into the harmonica it makes the elastic band vibrate, those vibrations carry the sound to your ears! The straws lift the band off the lollipop stick so that it can vibrate.

Now try:

  • Moving the straw pieces to create different sounds with your lollipop stick harmonica!
  • Using smaller lollipop sticks, does it sound different?