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How to Whistle with your Straw!

Updated on January 3, 2013

Your straw can be a musical instrument! You can use it as a whistle with it empty or for better results with liquid inside. Try this for a little fun when you are out eating with kids at a kid friendly place.

1. Fill the straw with liquid and use your finger to hold it on the top to keep the liquid in. (If you aren’t already familiar with this, you simply slip your finger in your mouth just after taking a drink and place it over your straw- this creates a vacuum in the straw and the liquid will stay- this little feature alone is a marvel for you kids if they haven’t seen it before.).

2. Holding the straw over your cup or something that you don’t mind catching the drips, pinch the bottom of the straw and release the top. Pinch tightly until ready to whistle.

3. Press the top of the straw against your bottom lip and blow over it, much like you’d blow over a pop bottle to whistle it. If this is hard for your child to do, tell them to say the word “whisper” and hold their mouth at the “er” sound.

4. As you blow, relax your pinch so that it will drip out slowly while you blow (if you don’t then you’re going to blow the liquid all over the place

5. You’ll notice the sound of the whistle pitch get lower as the liquid goes down the straw. It’s a fun sound.

As you get better at it, you can get such a high pitch and loud sound at the top that it hurts your ears!! It just takes practice. It’s a fun thing to do when you are eating at a pizza place and waiting a long time for your Pizza. It doesn’t matter if your kids are 5 or 15; it can be a fun little thing to do, to have a competition. It’s better than forking over tons of quarters for them to waste in the gumball machines while you wait, and it’s a skill they can take with them as teenagers hanging out with their friends and hopefully not get kicked out!!! But hey…if the worst thing that happens is the local pizza store manager has to ask your teens to quiet down their straw whistling….that’s not so bad. The thing is that you are teaching them to have a little fun with simple things. I learned this particular skill as a teenager out running around with a youth group. Of course our parents were not excited about the noise and we knew better than do to this is a nice family restaurant. When my stepson was about 5 or 6 it was a great icebreaker for us. Going out to eat for him had been a time to sit still so he was shocked by it and very quickly developed the skill. The younger kids are getting to the age that it’s embarrassing if I do it, but they love to show their friends when we all get together, so for now…until there are grandkids, my turn is over, unless I am requested to show how it’s really done! It’s such a small thing, you can be annoyed with it or you can relax and have a little fun- kids need the simple fun so give it a try!!

There is a non-liquid way to do it but you have to be careful not to hurt yourself and I don’t recommend showing this to kids that are under 8 or 9. All you do is take an empty straw, pinch at the bottom, and blow on the top while you slide your pinching finger up and down the straw. You need the other hand to firmly hold it at the bottom so you don’t accidentally pull the straw up and hurt yourself. It doesn’t seem like it would require a lot of concentration but it’s very likely your small child will do just that so….save that for when they are older. Not to mention…you just can’t get the loud sound with the empty straw!


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