Learning About Sound

Activity for ages 3 to 7.

We love kids’ science and these echolocation activities are a fun way to learn about sound. I have fond and vivid memories of playing in a deep and wide sand pit yelling at the top of my lungs. I’d wait and listen as my shout travelled across the way and bounced back to me. The activity was organic, playful, and full of science learning.

My sons, too, are fascinated with sound traveling, vibration, and bouncing so I came up with a few science of sound activities they love.

Simple Science Experiments for Kids

The Science of Sound to Kids

I began with fun ways to introduce children to the science of sound! I like to use books, videos, and quick experiments to ignite my boys’ desire to learn a certain topic. A few of our favorite introductions to sound were:

  1. Watching this awesome science of sound youtube video. Trust me, your kids will get hooked on the science too.
  2. Reading the Greek Myth with Echo as a the main character.
  3. Having my boys speak and hold their palms over their throats. I asked, “What do you feel? What do you think makes that vibration?”
  4. Screaming or speaking loudly into a bucket while they placed their hands on the bottom of the bucket to feel the vibration.

Simple Science Experiments with Kids Using a Bucket
The activities ignited my children’s desire to want to learn more about the science of sound.

I enjoy the conversations before experiments because asking questions like “I wonder what ‘sound’ is?” and “How does the sound get from your mouth to my ears?” typically results in creative answers from young children.

Simple Science Experiments for Kids

Sound Vibration Science

Whisper Activity

There is a drain pipe that runs under our driveway. One of my sons sits down by one end while his brother sits down at the other end of the pipe and they whisper back and forth.

If you don’t have a big pipe to help you with this activity, create an activity that demonstrates echolocation with two paper towel tubes and an aluminum pan. If you want to get fancy, go to your local hardware store for some PVC piping and experiment with various objects to act as the “bouncer”.

Set the paper towel rolls up in a “V” shape with the ends meeting in a bowl or pan. Have a child whisper into one paper towel roll and have another child place his ear up against the other one.

Sound Vibration Activity with Kids

Echo Hunt

Create a science project with kids by brainstorming a list of locations such as an empty gymnasium, a barn, a garage, a field, etc. together. Ask the children which locations they think will produce an echo and why.  Then test the hypotheses. Which locations produced an echo? Which locations did not? What was it about one location versus another?

Make an Oboe Reed

Create an Oboe Reed

We can thank Steve Spangler Science for this idea. The activity is a sure way to get a lot of fun sounds throughout your home or classroom. {Read: You might get annoyed but it is for the sake of education, right?}

All you need is a pair of scissors and a straw. Cut a triangle shape on one end by snipping each side. Then press your lips around the straw to create various tones. This activity is a great addition to a music unit of woodwinds.

Extensions

  • Discuss nocturnal animals and how they use their sounds to locate objects.
  • Use a jump rope or slinky to demonstrate sound vibrations.
  • Explore the sound of thunder. What make the clap? How far is the storm?

Science Kit

For even more fun, check out our mega pack of insanely cool science experiments for kids. Turn an egg to rubber, whip up a tornado in a jar, separate the colors of M&Ms, and much, much more.

Super Cool Science Kit - 2000

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Hi, I’m Malia.

I LOVE helping Pre-K, Kindergarten and First Grade teachers save time, stay inspired and give EVERY student bigger results. I’m so glad you’re here!

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