“Son, Can You Play Me a Melody?”

How to build a cardboard guitar for your youngster


Looking for a way to get your little love bugs unstuck from the TV?  Or maybe you’re looking for a fun way to round up the gang for some quality family time?   Either way, this crafty idea designed to transform your rambunctious rascals into talented, little musicians will be sure to entertain the whole family throughout production, and for many weeks afterward as well.  Not to mention, it’s a great way to get dad involved in craft time too!

Now, I’m not sure about all of you, but I love listening to music, and I always have; I am constantly singing along with the radio; always in my car, usually at work, and sometimes even in inappropriate places, where I’m met with awkward stares.  I enjoy it so much so, that I even take pride in ad-libbing my own unique lyrics to random beats that have gotten stuck in my head, or that I’ve manufactured myself (although those around me may not always share this sentiment!).  I find music to be very enjoyable and relaxing, sometimes even meditative.  After all, musical therapy does exist for a reason.  This lead me to think though, if I can enjoy this simple act so enthusiastically, then why not offer this pleasure to the rug rats as well?  They too, should be given the chance to express themselves musically.

Then I found this little gem in “The Mister Make It & Love It” series circulating on pinterest.com (http://www.makeit-loveit.com/2011/03/mister-make-it-and-love-it-series.html#more): Cardboard guitars.  This toy is great for all families, but especially those with musically inclined parents.  If your kids already enjoy watching mom or dad play the guitar, then imagine how much fun they will have playing along, using their very own, brand new instruments.  And one of the perks: these guitars aren’t loud enough to disturb your peace of mind, even if played by all of your children, all day long.

To successfully complete this project then, you will need the ukulele drawings found on the website provided above to trace overtop firm cardboard.  If you can’t find any of this at your house, visit a nearby store, and ask if they have any to get rid of.  Chances are, they will, and they will be happy to give it to you.  Once the cardboard has been successfully obtained, you must then trace the provided ukulele drawings, as instructed by “Mister Make It & Love It.”

Simply continue following the instructions laid out, and pictured, on the provided link, until completion is reached.  Necessary tools will be cardboard, glue guns and sticks, 2 wooden pencils or dowels that can be cut into 1.5 and 2.75 inch pieces (1 at each length), rubber bands, preferably colored, 2 paper clips, a pen or pencil for tracing, an exacto knife for precise cutting, and a drill.

Because such tools as a drill and an exacto knife are vital components to creating these toy guitars, it is pertinent that parents constantly supervise this project, and perform all actions requiring the use of these tools.  If children are older, it may be appropriate to allow them to help with the glue gun, but again, supervision is highly recommended, as I’m sure we all prefer to avoid accidents involving our children.

Allowing your kids to trace, and cut rubber bands though, will help them develop their fine motor skills, while also keeping them thoroughly entertained, and involved.  And another added benefit; they will occupy themselves with this musical toy for hours on end, in lieu of watching television all day, or worse, getting into mom and dads expensive belongings.