You do not need to purchase any instruments to make music at home with your children; there are a lot of household items that you can use as instruments. However, if you are considering investing in a music box, or box of musical instruments, for your children to be able to play with at home (a fantastic idea, by the way), then you could not go wrong adding a triangle to your instruments in that music box.
What is a Triangle?
A triangle is a very simple instrument. It is literally a tube of metal bent into the shape of, yes you guessed it, a triangle!
The triangle is an untuned percussion instrument. Percussion instruments, are ones which are played by being hit or scraped by a beater. Most percussion instruments are untuned, which means that they cannot be tuned to play a particular note, or notes.
How to Play the Triangle
It is played by hitting the sides of the triangle with a metal beater. The triangle needs to be dangled, usually from a string or something similar, although it can just dangle from a finger while you are playing it. I have lost the rubber band thing that my triangle came with, so in making the videos below I improvised using a pipe cleaner to dangle the triangle from.
So what would you do with the triangle at home?
- Play along with some music on the radio, or that you have chosen to listen to
- Try to hit the triangle in time to the beat, or pulse, of the music you are listening to
- Play the triangle as quietly as you can. It is quite a quiet instrument anyway, but can you hit it as gently as possible and make a really quiet sound?
- Play the triangle as loud as possible. To play loudly, well loud for this instrument, you just need to hit it hard (when playing with young children, watch out for the triangle, and beater perhaps, swinging around quite wildly!)
- Have a feel of the triangle and discuss its properties – is it hard or soft, warm or cold etc
- Use it in imaginative play, perhaps as a school bell, or alarm in a fire station; let your imagination run wild
Here are a couple of videos showing the very basics of how to play the triangle:
Another way of playing the triangle:
And once you have mastered the basics, it shouldn’t be too long before you can easily do something like this (well, a few weeks at least):