Kidding Around

Welcome to Kidding Around! This page is filled with fun activities, games, riddles, poems, coloring pages, and links. I hope you enjoy kidding around with me!


Mardi Gras Maracas
String is the Thing
Marvelous Maracas
Crazy Kazoos
Word Search Puzzle
Haiku For Kids
Coloring Musical Instruments


Mardi Gras Maracas
© 2005 By Johnette Downing

Mardi Gras


  1. Dry, empty and cleaned plastic water bottle with lid
  2. Mardi Gras beads


  1. Place three or four Mardi Gras beads in an empty and clean plastic water bottle.
  2. Shake!


String is the Thing

By Johnette Downing

String is the thing
Strings can sing
Can you count the strings
On these musical things?

A violin we begin
With melodies galore
How many strings do I have?
I have __________

A guitar we strum or pick
With cool and groovy licks
How many strings do I have?
I have ___________

A mandolin small and bright
With tunes sweet and great
How many strings do I have?
I have __________

Answers: A violin has four strings, a guitar has six and a mandolin has eight.


Marvelous Maracas

By Johnette Downing

Maracas Clipart


Making Maracas


Music and Art


  1. Cardboard tubes
  2. Paint
  3. Beans or Mardi Gras beads
  4. Stapler
  5. Yarn or colored tissue


  1. Have children paint tubes and let dry over night.
  2. Staple one end of the tube.
  3. If using Mardi Gras beads, cut beads into little pieces.
  4. Place a small handful of beads or beans (about ten beads or beans) into tube. Do not fill tube. Fewer beads sound better.
  5. Staple the open end of the tube perpendicular to the stapled end. This will allow more room inside the tube for the beads to move around.
  6. Staple yarn or colored tissue to the stapled ends as fringe for decoration.
  7. Play music, shake maracas and enjoy


Crazy Kazoos

By Johnette Downing

Kazoo Clipart


Paper Kazoo


Music, Art and Science


  1. Wax paper
  2. Scissors


  1. Cut wax paper into a small rectangle.
  2. Hold ends of wax paper lightly with index fingers and thumbs
  3. Dry your lips and pucker.
  4. Lightly place wax paper on dry lips.
  5. Say “Dooooo” in a high pitch.


  Music Note Clipart


Tube Kazoo


Music, Art and Science


  1. Wax paper
  2. Cardboard tube
  3. Rubber band
  4. Hole punch


  1. Make one hole punch in the cardboard tube.
  2. Place wax paper on the opposite tube end from the hole punch.
  3. Place a rubber band tightly around wax paper to hold in place on tube.
  4. Place dry mouth in open end of tube.
  5. Say “Dooooo” in a high pitch.



Comb Kazoo




Music, Art and Science


  1. Wax paper
  2. Comb


  1. Fold wax paper over comb.
  2. Hold comb in front of your dry lips.
  3. Hum or say “Dooooo” in a high pitch.


Word Search Puzzle

Click on the puzzle you would like to do. A new window will open. Print the word search puzzle. Have Fun!!

Instrument Word Search        Music Word Search Puzzle


By Johnette Downing
© Copyright 2003

What kind of bird likes to sing?
A hummingbird.

What fish plays music?
A drum.

What kind of insect likes to dance?
A jitterbug.

What is a squirrels’ favorite ballet?
The Nutcracker.

Why did the bird play his flute on a beach?
Because he was a sandpiper.

Why did the triceratops join the band?
Because he had three horns.

What do you get when you cross a bull, a rhino and a pyramid?
A band – three horns and a triangle.



Unscramble the Orchestra!

Unscramble the words below.

1.  Sumic


2.  Cheortrsa


3.  Downoiwd


4.  Trsnigs


5.  Rsbsa


6.  Rescupsoin


7.  Danb


8.  niwd


9.  tondocucr


10.  corse


Answers: 1) music 2) orchestra 3) woodwind 4) strings 5) brass 6) percussion 7) band 8) wind 9) conductor 10) score


Unscramble these musical instrument words.

1.  urmd


2.  artnigle


3.  asmraca


4.  tgiaru


5.  lelbs


6.  eurtamobni


7.  nopia


8.  lnivoi


9.  sasb


10.  tmeptur


Answers: 1) drum 2) triangle 3) maracas 4) guitar 5) bells 6) tambourine 7) piano 8) violin 9) bass 10) trumpet


Missing Letters

Fill in the missing letter(s) of these music words:

  1. Tu__a
  2. Be__t
  3. Dr__m
  4. Gui__ar
  5. Ta__bouri__e
  6. Tru__ __ et
  7. Ba__ __ oon
  8. O__oe
  9. Pi__ __olo
  10. Ce__ __o

1) b; 2) a; 3) u; 4) t; 5) m, n; 6) m, p; 7) s, s; 8) b; 9) c, c; 10) l, l


What Is In A Name?

Fill in the blanks.

  1. A person who plays the flute is a ___________.
  2. A person who plays the piano is a ___________.
  3. A person who plays the drums is a ___________.
  4. A person who plays the percussions is a _____________.
  5. A person who plays the guitar is a _____________.
  6. A person leading the orchestra is a _____________.
  7. A person who sings is called a _________ or _________.
  8. A person who writes lyrics is a ___________.
  9. A person who composes music is a ____________.
  10. A person who plays a musical instrument is a __________.

1) flautist 2) pianist 3) drummer 4) percussionist 5) guitarist 6) conductor 7) singer or vocalist 8) lyricist 9) composer 10) musician


All In the Music Family

The orchestra is divided into four sections or families: string, brass, percussion and woodwind. List the instruments that make up each family in an orchestra.

1) The string family is made up of four stringed instruments. List four below:

__________ ____________ ___________ ____________

2) The woodwind family is made up of several wind instruments. List four below:

__________ _____________ ____________ ___________

3) The brass family if made up of four brass instruments. List four below:

__________ ___________ ____________ _____________

4) The percussion family is made up of many percussive instruments. List four below:

__________ ___________ __________ _____________

1) violins, violas, cellos and double basses. 2) piccolos, flutes, oboes, clarinets, bassoons, and cor anglais. 3) trumpets, trombones, horns and tubas. 4) timpani, drums, bells, xylophones, glockenspiels, cymbals, triangles, hand bells, wood blocks, gongs and rattles.


Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin

Read Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin by Lloyd Moss and answer these questions:

  1. One musician playing alone is playing __________.
  2. Two musicians playing are a _______.
  3. Three musicians playing are a ________.
  4. Four musicians playing are a _________.
  5. Five musicians playing are a __________.
  6. Six musicians playing are a ___________.
  7. Seven musicians playing are a _________.
  8. Eight musicians playing are a __________.
  9. Nine musicians playing are a __________.
  10. Ten musicians playing are a ___________.

1) solo 2) duo 3) trio 4) quartet 5) quintet 6) sextet 7) septet 8) octet 9) nonet 10) chamber group


Jump Rope Rhymes

Here are some fun jump rope rhymes to learn, jump and share. All you need is the rope! Check out more rhymes in Anna Banana – 101 Jump Rope Rhymes by Joanna Cole and The Jump Rope Book by Elizabeth Loredo.

Starters rhymes:

Bluebells, cockle shells
Eevy, ivy OVER.

Counting rhymes:

Bubble gum, bubble gum in a dish
How many pieces do you wish?
One, two, three….

My little sister dressed in pink
Washed all the dishes in the kitchen sink
How many dishes did she break?
One, two, three….

Alphabet rhymes:

ABC and vegetable goop
What will I find in my vegetable soup?
A, B, C….

Fortune teller, fortune teller please tell me
What will the name of my true love be?
A, B, C….

Partner rhymes:

I like coffee, I like tea
I’d like ______ to jump with me.

Rooms for rent
Inquire within
As I move out
Let _____ move in.

Fast “pepper” rhymes:

Mabel, Mabel set the table
Just as fast as you are able
Don’t forget the salt, sugar, vinegar, mustard
And red hot peppers!

Musical Matching Game

Try to match these musical terms with their definitions!



1. Tempo

A. High or low

2. Rhythm

B. One beat

3. Pitch

C. Fast or slow speed

4. Rest

D. The number of beats per measure

5. Whole Note

E. One half beat

6. Half Note

F. A period of silence

7. Quarter Note

G. Two beats

8. Eighth Note

H. Four beats

9. Time Signature

I. The beat of the song

Answers: 1-C, 2-I, 3-A, 4-F, 5-H, 6-G, 7-B, 8-E, 9-D

Nursery Rhyme Matching Game

Try to match these phrases with their picture! Click on image to enlarge and print.

Nursery Rhyme Game

Haiku For Kids

By Johnette Downing
© Copyright 2003

Haiku is a short, “word picture” poem of Japanese origin. In English, a haiku is made up of two images separated by a pause usually in three unrhymed lines of fewer than seventeen syllables.

dark bayou
a fish jumps
through the moon

-Johnette Downing


I smell it
then see it
the camel

-David Lanoue


blue popsicles-
the children
compare tongues

-Stanford M. Forrester


conch shell
curled in the wave
of her hand

-Tom Painting


half rainbow—
even the colors have run out
to play

-Johnette Downing


cereal box
the toy submarine
at the bottom

-Stanford M. Forrester


high noon
the boys refill
their water pistols

-Tom Painting


kite festival-
a dragon
eats a cloud

-Stanford M. Forrester


morning stroll
in the lagoon
white tiger

-Johnette Downing

at the zoo
hundreds of eyes
watching peacocks

-Johnette Downing


green fish
an orchestrated
aquarium fish

-Johnette Downing


the sea
in one swallow
the jellyfish

-Stanford M. Forrester