Chilean Rainsticks

Chilean Rainsticks lesson plan

Listen to rain indoors with these replica rainsticks from Chile. Discover native legends from many cultures in the Americas.

  • 1.

    Find out how, where, and when rainsticks were discovered. Identify their uses in various indigenous cultures of the Americas. Choose Native American symbols that are especially appropriate to decorate your replica rattle.

  • 2.

    Seal your tube. Choose a recycled cardboard tube. Cut it to the desired length with Crayola® Scissors.

  • 3.

    On a recycled file folder, trace around an open end of your cardboard tube with Crayola Erasable Colored Pencils. Draw a larger circle around the first one. Cut around the bigger circle. Cut several slits from the outer edge of the larger circle in to the smaller circle. Make two of these double circles, one for each end of the tube.

  • 4.

    Fold the slit edges up from the smaller circle. With Crayola School Glue, seal one end of the tube with one of the circles. Air-dry the glue.

  • 5.

    Fill your rainstick. Roll and twist a long piece of aluminum foil into a spiral snake. Place the foil snake inside your tube.

  • 6.

    Pour a few seeds into your tube. Hold your hand over the open end of the tube and gently turn your rainstick over to see how it sounds. Experiment with the amount of seeds until you have the sound you like best.

  • 7.

    Glue the second end of your rainstick closed.

  • 8.

    Decorate your rainstick. Cover your art area with newspaper. Decorate the outside of your rainstick with authentic Native American colors and designs using Crayola Washable Paint and Paint Brushes. Air-dry your rainstick.

  • 9.

    Glue on decorative craft materials for a finishing touch. Air-dry before turning your rainstick from one end to another.


  • Students research the history of the rainstick and learn how it was originally made.
  • Students understand the use of the rainstick in various cultures.
  • Students create a replica rainstick and decorate it in authentic Native American designs.


  • Make various length rainsticks or use other materials inside to hear how the sound of each will change.
  • Research and make other Chilean or Native American instruments.
  • Research Native American legends about the rainstick.