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Easy DIY Rainstick Craft from a Paper Towel Roll

Learn how to create your own DIY rainstick craft from a paper towel roll. Explore the sound of rain with this easy rainstick craft.

Who doesn’t love the sound of rain? A homemade DIY rain stick is a great craft to do with your kids on a rainy day! If you can’t enjoy the rain outside, might as well bring it in!

Your kids will be so excited once they realize they can create musical instruments with just a few household items like a toilet paper roll. 

Rain sticks are cylindrical instruments (percussion instruments) that mimic the sound of falling rain when turned upside down. They are traditionally made from dried cactus tubes filled with small pebbles or beans. However, for those who do not have access to cactus tubes, there are alternative materials that can be used.

To make a homemade rainstick craft, you will need a few basic materials such as a cardboard tube, rice or beans, and decorative materials such as paint or beads. The first step is to prepare the cardboard tube by cutting it to the desired length and sealing one end with paper or tape. Next, the tube can be filled with the small pebbles, beans or rice. The other end of the tube is then sealed, and the outside of the tube can be decorated as desired. Overall, making a rainstick craft is a simple and enjoyable activity that can be done with minimal materials and effort.

DIY rainstick craft from a paper towel roll 

This is such a great sensory project that works on fine motor skills for little kids too. The best part, you can entertain your kids of all ages for at least 30 minutes with this craft. That’s a huge mom win for me!

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Materials to make your own rainstick:

Optional Materials

In addition to the basic materials, you can also use some optional materials to enhance your rainstick craft. These include:

  • Paint or markers to decorate the cardboard tube
  • Feathers or ribbons to attach to the ends of the rainstick
  • Additional decorative items such as stickers, sequins, or glitter
  • Natural materials such as dried flowers or leaves to add to the rice or beans inside the rainstick for a unique sound

How to make a rainstick from a paper towel roll

  1. Use the end of your cardboard tube to trace two circles (about 5″ apart) on the construction paper.
  2. Cut out two circles about 3″ outside of the circles you traced.
  3. Cut slits around the circles that you traced.
  4. Lay the circle on one end of the tube and tape the slits around the end of the tube.
  5. Pull out a large piece of aluminum foil and roll it lengthwise
  6. Create a spiral with the aluminum foil by wrapping it around the cardboard tube.
  7. Place the aluminum foil inside the cardboard tube.
  8. Pour rice or other filler material inside the tube. See more about this below.
  9. Place the other circle on the other end of the cardboard tube with tape.
  10. Turn your rainstick in all different directions and hear the soothing sound of rain!

Even though this is one way to make your own rain stick, there are a handful of other tutorials with different methods. Some of the other methods to make the sound of rain include materials like a rubber band, small nails, dry beans and things like pipe cleaners. My personal opinion is that, especially for young children, this was (and is) one of the safest ways to make a realistic sound. 

Preparing the Filler

The filler is what creates the sound of the rainstick. There are many different materials that can be used, such as rice, beans, small pebbles, or beads. It is important to choose a material that will create a pleasant sound when the rainstick is turned over.

To prepare the filler, place the chosen material into a bowl. This is optional but you can also add a few drops of essential oil or food coloring if desired. Mix well to ensure that the material is evenly coated. Then, allow the material to dry completely before using it to fill the rainstick.

Trace circles for the ends of the rainstick and enclose the toilet paper tube

DIY rainstick

You can see where I traced circles out from the end of the paper towel tube.

Speaking of cardboard tubes, did you see where I created a confetti popper from a toilet paper tube? You’ll have to check that out when you’re done with this project. 

I’ve also shared a handful of other fun crafts from a toilet paper roll and paper towel roll too!

cutting paper for rainstick

You can also see where I cut around the circle leaving a few inches.

easy rainstick

The purpose for cutting the slits around the circle is so the rest of the construction paper will lay flat on the cardboard tube when you tape it.

creating end of DIY rainstick

Place the cardboard around the tube and tape it down.

Adding Aluminum foil

DIY rainstick

You can see where I’m using the cardboard tube to create a spiral with the aluminum foil. Insert the spiraled aluminum foil into the cardboard tube.

Adding rice

pouring rice for DIY rainstick craft

Pour the rice in the tube. It makes it easier for kiddos to use a funnel. If you don’t have one, no sweat, because it’s not necessary.

Decorate the outside of the tube

decorating rainstick

Start wrapping the tube (DIY rainstick) with construction paper.

This is the part of the project where you can be as creative as you want.

I chose to wrap the tube in construction paper to cover the yucky brown. You can paint it, add glitter to it, or even add wrapping paper to it!

The end of a DIY rain stick

I added a little ribbon to the end to make it look a little more “finished.”

This isn’t the most elaborate project I’ve ever completed, but it sure was easy.

Like I said, this is a fun rainstick craft that kids of all ages can do.

DIY Rainstick Craft

EASY DIY RAINSTICK
EASY DIY RAINSTICK
DIY rainstick craft

P.S. I’ve also shared some interesting facts about the African rainstick on this post here if you are interested. If you are looking for more weather related crafts, check out this Daily Weather Worksheet Charts & Graphs with a free printable!

DIY RAINSTICK CRAFT FROM A PAPER TOWEL ROLL-GREAT FOR ALL AGES

DIY rainstick craft from a paper towel tube

Learn how to create your own DIY rainstick craft from a paper towel roll. Explore the sound of rain with this DIY rain stick.

Active Time 20 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Difficulty easy
Estimated Cost 10

Materials

  • Paper towel roll (or cardboard tubes)
  • Construction paper
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Aluminum foil
  • Rice
  • Ribbon (optional)

Tools

  • Scissors

Instructions

  1. Use the end of your cardboard tube to trace two circles (about 5" apart) on the construction paper.
  2. Cut out two circles about 3" outside of the circles you traced.
  3. Cut slits around the circles that you traced.
  4. Lay the circle on one end of the tube and tape the slits around the end of the tube.
  5. Pull out a large piece of aluminum foil and roll it lengthwise
  6. Create a spiral with the aluminum foil by wrapping it around the cardboard tube.
  7. Place the aluminum foil inside the cardboard tube.
  8. Pour rice inside the tube.
  9. Place the other circle on the other end of the cardboard tube with tape.
  10. Turn your rainstick in all different directions and hear the soothing sound of rain!

Save those paper towel rolls and grab some rice and aluminum foil. It’s time to make rain!

If you are looking for a handful of the best rainstick craft kits, I’ve got you covered.

Thanks for stopping and happy crafting!

Roslyn Duncan

Sunday 6th of March 2022

Can you substitute tin foil with something else? Would greaseproof paper do?

craftingwithki

Monday 7th of March 2022

I'm not sure. The tin foil makes a certain noise against the rice that mimics rain. If the grease proof makes a similar noise, then it would work!

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