Sound Machine (Student Guide) - Digital Promise

Sound Machine (Student Guide)

How might we use a Makey Makey to create an interactive device?


Prepare: Learn about the key ideas in this project

The Makey Makey is a device that can connect the physical world to the digital world. Plug it in to a USB port on a computer and repurpose everyday objects into a DIY keyboard!

Watch the introductory video about the Makey Makey and browse the project gallery on the Makey Makey website to get inspired.

Read about how to connect the Makey Makey to your computer and follow the instructions to get started.


Practice: Try as many activities to as you would like to build your skills

Experiment with different materials to explore what is conductive and what is not. Can you use the Makey Makey with wires, plants, food, or other people? Try as many different materials as you can!

Control different programs on your computer with the Makey Makey. Try playing notes on a Scratch piano or changing slides on a PowerPoint presentation.

Play a Scratch game with a custom controller. Follow the Video Game Remix project and use the Makey Makey to allow users to play the game without touching the computer’s keyboard.


Produce: Dig into the project and make it your own!

Create an interactive sound machine!

Use a Makey Makey to trigger sounds on your computer when you touch certain objects.

  • Can you create an instrument that plays musical notes?
  • Can you create touch pads that play sound effects that you have recorded?
  • Can you create an interactive book that reads aloud when you touch certain words?

Invite your friends to test your sound machine!


Produced by Digital Promise Global, with thanks to the Open Educational Resources listed throughout this guide. Distributed to Learning Studios schools as part of HP, Inc. and Microsoft’s Reinvent the Classroom.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. You may share this project or modified versions of it under this same license.

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