Do-Re-Mi with Drinking Straws Essay

775 Words 4 Pages
When playing a musical instrument, shortening the length of the air tube will make the pitch higher, and expanding the length of the air tube will make the pitch lower. Drinking straws can be cut to different lengths to produce different pitches. They can form a type of “oboe” (a woodwind instrument, similar to a clarinet) that will vibrate and create a sound when it is blown into. A straw that is half the length of another straw will be exactly one octave higher than the longer straw. It is recommended to use paper straws, because plastic straws are harder to focus into one note. Sound is a wave, which can change in pitch according to changing air pressure. It is produced by the vibrations of objects. Waves can be measured by speed (v), …show more content…
Consonant intervals generally end up having frequency ratios with numerator and denominator being small whole numbers.
Ratio Name of Interval Example from C to: Perception
135/128 Major Chroma C-sharp Dissonant
9/8 Major Second D Dissonant
6/5 Minor Third E-flat; Consonant
5/4 Major Third E Consonant
4/3 Perfect Fourth F Consonant
45/32 Diatonic Tritone F-sharp Dissonant
3/2 Perfect Fifth G Consonant
8/5 Minor Sixth A-flat Consonant
5/3 Major Sixth A Consonant
9/5 Minor Seventh B-flat Dissonant
15/8 Major Seventh B Dissonant
2/1 Octave C' Consonant

(Olson, Andrew. Do-Re-Mi with Straws. N.p.: Science Buddies, 2013. N. pag. Science Buddies. Web. 13 Mar. 2014.) When making the straw “oboes,” the flattened, triangular tip acts as reed does in a woodwind instrument. A reed vibrates when an instrument is blown into, allowing a sound to be created. Then, the musician covers the holes on the body of the instrument, which shortens or lengthens the path of the air, causing the tone to raise or drop in pitch. Furthermore, the straw oboes can change in pitch by cutting off pieces at the end of the straw. As the straw is shortened, the wavelength is shortened, which, consequently, raises the pitch of the tone. (Arons, Eric. Making A Straw Woodwind. N.p.: Reach Out Michigan, n.d. N. pag. Reach Out Michigan. Web. 16 Mar. 2014.)
When you blow into the straw oboe, a pulse of compressed air moves through the straw at the

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