Tag Archives: Dhol

Color The Musical Instruments – All The Way Around The World!

Coloring Book CoverWho doesn’t love to color? No matter how young or old you area, it’s fun to get out a set of crayons or colored pencils and personalize a perfect page!   And if you can also learn about other cultures in the process, all the better!

We’ve just released this e-book that’s actually a compilation of readers’ favorite musical instrument pages from the WORLD MUSIC WITH DARIA  website. Called “Let’s Color … A World Of Music!” there are 12 pages including common favorites like the guitar as well as more unique instruments such as the balalaika from Russia, the sitar from India or the panpipes (zampoñas) from South America.

erhu coloring pageIn addition to coloring fun, you can also use this book as a creative way to learn about other cultures. For instance, if you listen to any classical or traditional music from China, you’ll probably hear an erhu. In “Let’s Color … A World Of Music!” you can not only see what it looks like but find out what it is made of and how it is played as well.

Exploring the culture of India?  You can learn about a sitar or a two-headed drum from Northern India called a dhol. If you’re taking a virtual trip to the Andes, you can find a miniature guitar made from shell of an armadillo or a special rattle (called chapchas) made from the toenails of sheep or goats.

Best of all, during June and July 2014, you can get your copy free at the link below. And in the meantime, here’s a list of the 12 instruments you can discover and enjoy:

sitar coloring pageBalalaika







Erhu, Guitar, Sitar, Ukulele and Zampoñas.

“Let’s Color … A World Of Music!” From TeachersPayTeachers


This post was originally published in 2014 with a “free E-book offer.  If you’re a teacher or parent on a limited budget and want a free Educator’s copy, please e-mail dariamusic at yahoo dot com.






Sharing The Culture Of India With Your Children

meeras india graphic

We’re pleased to have a guest post this month by noted Indian-American Author, Meera Sriram.  In this short article Meera shares ways she stays in touch with her birth culture and makes it a welcome and enriching part of her children’s lives.

It’s been almost two decades for me and my husband in a country on the other side of the world. We had our challenges, big and small – navigating through grad school, finding what we liked to do for a living and adapting to new ways of life in the U.S. But little did we realize that the climb in the learning curve was yet to come.  The joys of parenthood came with the responsibility of keeping our children aware of our roots in India, and to constantly foster a connection between two diametric continents.
As an effort in that direction, we have been spending most of our summers with family in India. Besides providing great cultural immersion, it also helps my children find answers to why we do certain things the way we do in our home in the U.S. But how do we keep them in touch while we go about our lives here? Food is one way. I often put in the extra effort to learn and prepare traditional recipes besides standard fare. Books have hugely helped us learn about the places and people of India. Holidays and family traditions periodically help us celebrate our culture and customs in fun ways.  To add to this list is music. While I come from a family of well-trained classical musicians, my knowledge of Indian classical music is still limited (strange, but that’s a story for another day-:) And since we don’t watch Bollywood, film music is not the staple. However we do expose our children to classical (Carnatic) music and Indian film music now and then. But there are some songs that cannot be boxed into either of these, but have better appealed to their senses. They have also opened up beautiful passages to connect with the music and culture of India. Here are some of them:

Favorite Songs For Sharing With Kids

Both my kids have been soothed to sleep by the comforting and melodious songs in this collection of traditional lullabies by Bombay Jayashri. Interestingly, each song is in a different regional language of India.
Karadi Rhymes was my first find to consciously introduce cultural elements of India to my first born, when she was a toddler. The songs are set to folksy tunes and the lyrics bring out the flavor of the country through simple themes like mangoes, chai and Diwali.

Vaishnava jan to tene (Preview) is a song I often listen to which caught the attention of the kids as well. Interestingly, one of the reasons for this song’s claim to fame is that it was a favorite of Mahatma Gandhi. Maybe this tidbit is why they are fascinated?  I’d never know!

Lately, our palette has grown to include fusion music as well, the kind where East meets West. Some recent favorites are  A.R. Rehman’s Zariya (Preview) ,  Maatibaani feat. JoyShanthi (Preview) , Karthick Iyer’s Clown’s junket (Preview) and Shankar Tucker’s Jaane Kaise (Preview) .

Vande Mataram is an eternal favorite at home – a patriotic song that celebrates the diverse landscapes and people of India with amazing visuals that reinforce the love for the land.  Here’s a Youtube version of that song:



Color The Instruments From India!

dhol imageYou can find coloring pages including the dhol drum and the Indian sitar on DARIA’s world music for kids site, in the activity and craft section here:



Make And Play Your Own Dhol Drum

dhol image

Almost every culture has a special kind of drum to call its own.  In Northern India, the dhol is a two-headed drum worn around the neck, often decorated in very beautiful ways.  It is played with two beaters (sticks) and can be a fun way of encouraging coordination between right hand and left hand as well as exploring new rhythms or the culture of India.


dhol supplies To create a homemade version of a dhol drum, you need a few simple supplies:

Round (cylindrical) cardboard container (from oatmeal, bread crumbs, corn meal, etc.)

Felt, construction paper or poster board (large enough piece to fit around the cylinder).

Duct tape

Piece of sturdy ribbon, bric-brac, old belt or recycled strap from a purse.

2 pencils

2 plastic spoons

Materials for decoration (if desired)

Crayons, markers, stickers, or glitter and glue.

Yarn for tassels

dhol half madeMake Your Own Dhol

Start by cutting a length of ribbon or strap so that the “drum” that will fit comfortably over your child’s head and hang at about stomach height.  Duct tape the strap into place onto the cylinder.

Next, cut a length of felt, construction paper or poster board to fit over the cylinder.  Decorate it with crayons, markers, glitter and glue or similar materials, if desired.

When you’ve completed your design, tape the felt or paper into place.

Create two beaters for the drum.  Since sticks can be a safety hazard with young children, I encourage parents, teachers and caregivers to tape two plastic spoons to unsharpened pencils and dhol drum - completeduse them as beaters.  They are the right length for dhol drum beaters and don’t leave any sharp edges exposed.


Many dhol are decorated with colorful tassels.  If you want to add some to your drum, simply wind your favorite colors of yarn around a small length of cardboard.  Slip the yarn off the cardboard, and tie one side creating the “head” of the tassel.  Then cut the strings on the opposite side so they will hang down as fringe.

And attach to your drum!

Playing the Dhol

Allow your child to put the drum “on” and experiment with striking each side with a beater.

josef plays dholTry striking back and forth slowly and then more quickly.

Try making up patterns like: “Left side, left side, right!”

Or more complicated ones as well.

Try walking and playing your dhol.

Discover some traditional dhol rhythms and see if you can imitate them.

The Traditional Dhol

Want to discover some traditional rhythms played in this drum? You can see and hear them here:

Other Instruments From India – Indian Ankle Bells

Check out this fun and easy craft – making Indian-style ankle bells called ghungroo: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Instruments-From-India-Make-Your-Own-Ankle-Bells-Ghungroo-486879


Color a Dhol  http://www.dariamusic.com/docs/Dhol%20Coloring%20Page.pdf

Dhol Drum mini-poster and coloring page from TeachersPayTeachers http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/The-Dhol-Drum-Instruments-From-India-904625