Have you spotted that school milk is now being delivered to the infant classes in mini-sized plastic bottles?
It won’t take long for me to collect a class set of shakers. They need a decent amount of washing to get rid of the stale milk smell. I rinsed them in hot soapy water, and then let them sit in a tub of the kind of disinfectant you use for sterilizing babies’ feeding bottles and other for half an hour and that seemed to do the trick. (You can buy the disinfectant from chemists as tablets and liquids and own-brand – whatever is easiest for you to deal with. It won’t be wasted – I use it for sterilizing descant recorders, ocarinas, samba whistles and plastic kazoos)
They didn’t take long to dry, and I’ve put a small tablespoon of rice into each and screwed the lid on tight. Another infant class is going to collect them, and let the children experiment with different kinds of filling – pasta, beads, paperclips – whatever seems a good idea. Because the bottles are opaque, you could make pairs, marking the bases with matching symbols, and then play games matching the bottles by sound.
If you are playing them as ganzas, hold them sideways on and shake them forwards and backwards for a good crisp sound.
I think these milk-bottle-and-rice “ganzas” make a better sound than the ones supplied in the kit that I use in one of my schools.
As I have already blown the music budget with a class set of ocarinas, the head is very pleased that they are cheapy cheap cheap, and the class teacher will (hopefully) enjoy a little project.