Make your own noise maker -- shake, rattle and roll!

by Melissa Jaramillo

noisemakersThe kids are determined to make it to midnight on New Year's Eve. It hasn't worked in the past, but just in case you need to be ready.

Put out the buffet snacks. Gather up the pots, pans, and noise makers for the big count down. You don't have any noise makers? We can fix that!

Make your own noise makers to greet the New Year. The kids will have fun pulling this project together and thrilled when you put it to use!

Make your own noise maker -- shake, rattle and roll!

Roll and blow

The humble toilet paper tube comes through again.

You'll need:
✓ Empty toilet paper or paper towel roll
✓ Wax paper/tissue paper – cut a 4×4 square for each (Wax paper works best as it’s more sturdy, the tissue paper tends to tear)
✓ Hole punch
✓ Rubber band
✓ Markers, stickers, crayons

Punch a hole about an inch from one end of the tube. On the same end, fold the square of paper over the opening and use the rubber band to secure it tightly in place.

Test it out. Say "do do do do do" into the open end. It should sound like a kazoo. If it's not quite right, try making the paper a little tighter.

Decorate your noise maker with markers, stickers or crayons and you're set for midnight.

Big kid variation: Have your child cut two 3 1/2- to 4-inch squares of wax paper or Mylar. For the Mylar, reuse a mailing package. Cover one end a square and secure it with a rubber band. Pour a handful of rice or dry macaroni into the tube. Close the other end with the remaining square and rubber band. Now decorate that tube. You can cover it with wrapping paper or foil, draw with markers or cover it with stickers, feathers or sequins.

Make one for every member of the family, or every person on the block and stay busy all afternoon.

Shake it up!

You'll need:

✓ A matchbox or other container
✓ Popsicle or kebab stick
✓ Rice, beans, beads...
✓ Paper strips
✓ Tape or hot glue
✓ Markers, crayons or stickers


Punch a hole in a matchbox big enough to allow it to spin on a popsicle or a kebab stick. Partially fill your matchbox with beads, beans or whatever rattling material you want. Try more than one and see if they sound different. Tape the ends securely shut.

Jam the stick into the matchbox. Glob some hot glue to hold it in place or wrap tape around it so it doesn't slide around. Allow to dry. Cut strips of paper the width of the box and wrap around it, overlapping 1/2 inch. Glue or tape in place. Once dry, you can paint it or throw on some glitter and confetti and you're good to go.

How does it work? Fwoosh it in circles to make annoying or delightful sounds, depending whom you ask -- the kid or the parent.

As we exit 2012, please know that we want to say thank you to everyone visiting. We wish you only the best throughout 2013. Happy New Year!

Do you allow the kids to stay up late on the last night of the year?

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.