Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb Drumming Rhythm Activity

We made our own music after reading a rhythmic picture book. Drumming is a great rhythmic activity.

Strawberry loves to make a musical band in our play room. Reading Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb by Al Perkins prompted her to create her own drum as well. Making music and especially drumming was a fun action and rhythm activity for an active preschooler.

About the Picture Book

[amazon_link asins=’B010EV7QAG’ template=’RightAlignSingleImage’ store=’rebereid06-20′ marketplace=’US’ link_id=’de3996fb-4802-11e7-96ba-ef8fa4507386′]I love the rhythm of Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb. It almost begs for the reader to start drumming.  It’s one of my favorite children’s books because I have fond memories of reading it as a child. Besides, I still see our worn out copy when I visit my mother!

There is little plot in this story. Essentially, a monkey is drumming and then other monkeys join in. In the end, millions of monkeys are drumming, and then it quiets down again to just the one monkey. If that sounds ridiculous, please know that the book is actually a ton of fun to read! It is about the feel of the words, for the most part.

There is something simply delightful about finding the rhythm as you read a story with a child, and although there is little plot to the book, it is a book I don’t mind rereading time and again.

About Our Activity

I had intended to make this into a STEM type of activity. We would design our own drum and talk about the sounds as we hit it.

Strawberry had other ideas. She just wanted to get started drumming! The box she found in the office did just the trick for her. She played with our recorder, harmonica, triangle, and homemade bean tambourines as well. For her, this was about the noise!

We read the book as she drummed too. I encouraged her to listen to the beat. I demonstrated drumming with the sounds of the words.

For the most part, however, it was simply fun to play with a homemade drum!

Like this post? Pin it for later!We were inspired to make our own drumming rhythms in our simple rhythm activity the other day.

See more A-Z Play at Home ideas for the letter D below.The A-Z Play at Home Series

D is for Drums Rhythm Activity and …

D is for Dinosaur Hunt

D is for Dinosaur Swamp Sensory Bin

D is for Coffee Can Drums

D is for Duck Tape Super Hero Masks

D is for Name Recognition Dominos

D is for Ducky Counting


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  • Love this! Absolutely agree – this book is great for playing the rhythms along with the words. We also have our little one try out different dynamics and change how loud or soft certain parts are, which also works really well with the patterns in the book!

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