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Strings, Strings, Strings!

September 13, 2016
By Dr. Gail Looney - Wheeling Symphony , OVParent

Can you name a stringed instrument? How about a guitar? Or, the largest group of instruments in the orchestra - the violin?

Violins are named "strings" because their sound is made by the strings that are stretched across their body. Can you think of other instruments that have strings? If you guessed the viola, cello and double bass, you are absolutely correct!

Members of the string family in the orchestra all look the same - they are just copies of the violin, only larger. The smallest is the violin, and the largest is the double bass. Violin plays the highest sounds; double bass plays the lowest.

Article Photos

Look at pictures of the violin, viola, cello and double bass and play a game by putting them in order by size and sound.

Do the following:

1. Google "dso Kids" and click "Listen by Instrument." (This is a Dallas Symphony site.)

2. Choose violin, viola, cello and double bass one at a time.

3. Print and cut out the photos of each stringed instrument to play a game putting them in order of small to large.

4. Then listen to each instrument play,

"Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star," and choose the picture that goes with the instrument.

Remember, the bass is the lowest and the violin the highest. (Note to parents: Viola and cello are more difficult to hear, and children may need some help.)

Can you think of a way to make a stringed instrument with rubber bands and a container from your kitchen? If you made one, pluck the "strings" to make a sound. Play your new instrument and sing, "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star," just like the violin, viola, cello and double bass played on dso Kids.

You are a musician!



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