Wednesday, 17 September 2014

African Djembe Drums

African Djembe Drums were a great design and technology project for my year 3 and 4 . It linked with our Global Partnership school in Uganda and with our power of reading text about stories from other cultures. the children taped together two plastic cups (make sure they are of good quality otherwise they can break). We then applied two good layers of papier mache. I have used many different papier mache recipes but the simplest is the best. click here for my favourite Youtube video recipe.
Obviously this is a two week project as the papier mache needs a good 24 to 48 hours to dry. Whilst the drums were drying we took the opportunity to watch some videos of classic Djembe drumming which the children really enjoyed. One of the classes had received African drumming lessons in the year previous so could bring their own knowledge to the lesson. I asked the children to record in their sketch books any observations of colour and patterns they saw on the drums ready for the next weeks lessons.

The following week once the drums were fully dried and strong we painted them using our sketches in our sketchbooks as a reference. Some of the children chose to paint it then let it dry and use markers to add detail but others chose to use paint to add the detail.

Finally the last stage was to use good quality or large balloons to cover the open end of the drums and secure in pace with elastic bands. I used the large rice balloons, that remind me of summer fetes when I was a kid, that I cut in two.

Something I never got round to doing sue to time constraints and the children's age/ ability was to  use string as an extra adornment to create a zig-zag pattern around the top half.