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Hope Harris

Hope’s recipe for Magical Musical Maracas

I like to take a simple craft (because frankly, that’s all I can manage) and add a little magic! So here’s my easy recipe for Magical Musical Maracas:

You’ll need:
  • 2 clean, small, used plastic water bottles with tops, completely dry, from your recycling bin
  • 6 handfuls of assorted birdseed (for those 3 and under make sure the seeds go in the bottle not in the mouth!)
  • A big plate
  • A funnel or a piece of paper to roll into a funnel
  • A bit of duct tape or packing tape just in case the desire to shake birdseed all over the room overpowers the desire to have a shaker. (It happens. Believe me.)
  • Your imagination
Here we go:
  1. Take 6 handfuls of the assorted birdseed and put them on the big plate. Spread the seeds around so that you can see the individual seeds well.
  2. Have the child select 5 favorite seeds from the plate. Set them aside. Ask the child to explain why he or she selected those particular seeds. Was it the color? Shape? Size? These are your “magic” seeds. Name them, if you wish. You do the same.
  3. Have the bottles open and funnel ready. (If you want to work on small motor skills or the pincer grasp, start by having the child put some seeds in the bottle one by one. But we will be doing this with the magic seeds at the end!)
  4. You hold the funnel as the child scoops up the seeds in small handfuls. Have the child empty the handful of seeds into the funnel. Repeat until you have about an inch or two of seeds in the bottle. Then have the child hold the funnel for you and fill your bottle.
  5. Now for your imagination… Each of you put your 5 “magic” seeds in one hand and with the other make a circle over the seeds while saying: “Magic seeds, oh, magic seeds make mucha mega music, if you please.” Say it again but this time like an opera singer, or a sports announcer, or a spy…you decide.
  6. Then one by one each of you drop your 5 “magic” seeds into your bottle.
  7. Put the top on each bottle and seal each with the tape (or don’t and take your chances).
  8. Shake your magical maracas and notice how the magic seeds add extra pizzaz to the sound! Sing your favorite songs and play your favorite music and shake those Magical Musical Maracas!!!