Make your own Harmonica
Ages 6 and older

Did you know that music can be a great way to connect art and science? Today’s Harmonicas not only look cool but are a great chance to think about how a Harmonica works. Just like a real, metal harmonica, our harmonica will rely on air being forced to pass around an object which creates a vibration. These vibrations are what make the music. Our simple Harmonica will use a piece of paper and some toothpicks to create vibrations.


  • 2 popsicle sticks
  • 2 rubber bands
  • Toothpick
  • 1 piece of paper
  • scissors


  1. Cut a strip of paper so that it is the same size as a popsicle stick
  2. Break/cut the toothpick so you have 2 pieces that are as long as the width of a popsicle stick some adult help/supervision may be required
  3. Place the paper on top of one popsicle stick
  4. Place one toothpick piece on top of the paper towards one end of the popsicle stick (avoid placing it on the curved part)
  5. Place the other popsicle stick on top of the toothpick piece and hold all of the layers together by placing a rubber band around the end where the toothpick piece is.
  6. Take the other toothpick piece and place it under the paper layer at the other end
  7. Use the rubber band to hold the other end together
  8. Now make some music!

More fun:

Toothpicks are very thin and narrow! This effects how the paper vibrates and what noise our harmonicas make. Try replacing the toothpick with a piece of straw or even part of another popsicle stick. How does that change the sound?

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