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Lesson Plans

Re: Another Rainstick idea

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Roy Liebergen (rllieber)
Sun, 26 Apr 1998 13:16:31 -0500

wendy sauls wrote:
> hi,
> i've been reading with great interest about the different ways to make
> rainsticks.
> i have one from a long time ago - if i remember correctly, there was a
> little card that came with it about it being made of a special kind of wood
> with cactus thorns inside and seeds or something...
> does anyone know more about the traditional rainsticks, where they came
> from, their history, etc?
> thanks!
> wendy
> Wendy Sauls
> Art Teacher, Kanapaha Middle School, Gainesville, FL
> Doctoral Student, Art Education, Florida State University
> wsauls
> home page:

Wendy, I got the following information from a shop that was selling
rainsticks, it came on a little card with the rainstick.

The Rainstick: A song to the spirits

The legend: somewhere in Africa, before the birth of Christ, rainsticks
were played to remind the spirits that rain was welcome. This rainstick
serenades the gods of the Diaguitas, a native Chilean people. From
windswept hillsides and barrancas beneath the Andes, artisans with
burros collect dead and dried Normata cactus which might otherwise be
used for firewood. ( Absolutely no live cactus is cut.) The thorns are
then pressed into hollow shafts. Pebbles cascading over the thorns
crate the water sound of this ancient instrument which is still heard in
the music of the Andes. Play it. Pray for rain. Or pray for
tranquility and peace. This rainstick is magic.