What’s a Nature Beatbox?
The Basic Idea
Using the free App- Keezy, children record sound bites from nature. The App records each one individually and then you can use the sounds like a drum machine- each large coloured button playing the sound back. One at a time, two at a time, three at a time… The result is a beatbox… compiled solely of sounds from the wild!
In more detail…
Keezy is a free App which is only available on iOS at the moment. If anyone finds an android equivalent please comment below- I haven’t been able to find any good free alternatives.. yet.
Discuss with children… What makes a noise? What instruments are heard in music? How do beatboxers make their music? What makes a noise/could make a noise in nature? (Yes, banging sticks together is the most obvious example, and so is rustling leaves… but what about running a stick across the bark of different trees etc.)
Once the children have some ideas about what to record, show them how to use Keezy. It really is very easy- hold down the middle black button on screen. Choose the + to make a new ‘sound board’ and then hold down a coloured key whilst you record a sound. Explain/wait for the children to find out that it is best to have a couple of ‘buttons’ which are used for the beat, then some others as more interesting melodies. The clips can be very short or longer.
Once the sounds have been recorded, the fun begins! Children and teachers, love making their own piece of music using the clips. Every time you tap the button, the sound is played. Start them at once, play them alternatively…
How to take it even further or make it more challenging
When you record, a white circle turns and completes every second. Discuss beats- what will they record their beat as (2 beats per second?).
Get the children to compose their own music- writing down the buttons they press into a table. Can another group ‘play’ music?
Please add any great ideas that your children came up with for making music below in the comments!