Inclusive Music Resources – some ideas for you to try!

There are four people in the picture. They are all looking at a big red button which is balanced on the arm of a sofa. There is a child sitting on the sofa near the button, we can only see the back of their head as they lean towards the button. Standing at the back is a young person in a red t-shirt and black and red bobble hat. They are leaning on the arm of the sofa and they look like they are about to press the button. On the left, kneeling on the floor are two women, one has a small guitar like instrument and a big smile on her face, the other woman's hands are a blur or clapping.

These Inclusive Music Resources have been created by musicians who participated in 4 by 8; DIY’s training programme for musicians wanting to develop their inclusive practice. The ideas have all been developed in partnership with DIY Leaders and have been piloted in partner organisations with children and young people with learning disabilities.

We hope you will find them useful!

Songs to say ‘Hello’ and ‘Goodbye’

When running music activities, you might like to start and finish with Hello and Goodbye songs. Here are some options which can work well with different groups.

– Download the resource Sing Hello, Sing Goodbye

Explore the Cajon Drum

A cajon is a type of drum you can sit on while you play it. Cardboard Cajon’s can be bought quite cheaply. This sheet explores how they can be used to:

  • Turn phrases from speech into rhythms
  • Make call and response rhythms
  • Play along with the ‘pulse’ of a favourite song
– Download the resource to Explore the Cajon Drum

Explore Using Switch Recordings

A Switch, or recordable button, is something that you can use to record a sound and play it back. This sheet explores:

  • Using switches to represent identity
  • Using switches for communication
  • Using switches for evaluation and feedback
– Download the resource Using Switch Recordings

Activity: Record and play back sounds

This resource takes you through simple steps to gain confidence in recording and playing back sounds. Participants work in pairs taking it in turns to make and record animal noises.

Ideally, each participant should have a device which can record. Apps on a phone, tablet or computer can all be used to record.)

– Download the resource sheets Activity: record – play back

Activity: Sound Scavenger !

  • What sounds can you find just using your body and voice?
  • How many sounds can you find in the room you’re in?
  • Sounds with instruments
  • Reflecting on the sounds discovered.
– Download the Sound Scavenger resource sheets

Bring more you to music!

A practical step by step guide to decorating a musical instrument. (A cardbord Cajon drum is used for demonstration.) Decorating a musical instument can

  • Help bring your identity to your instruments
  • Demonstrate how art and music go together
  • Encourage decision making
– Download the Bring more you to music! pdf

We’re Walking Through the Jungle!

A fun song to learn, with actions.

– Download the We’re Walking Through the Jungle! resource sheets and sing along with DIY – click to watch the video,  click again to pause.

DIY resource support Walking through the Jungle


Explore music with these resources

Below is a list of apps and websites which participants found helpful for exploring music on phones, pads and computers.

  • Bloom – Apple App
  • Chrome Music Lab
  • Groove Pizza
  • AirHarp: touchless 3D harp – Apple App
  • SoundPrism – Apple App
  • Aumi
  • BarrelTones – Apple App
  • Falling Stars – Apple App
  • Magic Piano – Google Play App
  • ThumbJam – Apple App
  • GarageBand – Apple App
  • Samplebot – Apple App
  • Jam Looper – Google Play and Apple App
  • iMaschine 2 – Apple App
  • Figure – Apple App



Many thanks to

  • the musicians who took part in the 4 by 8 programme and created these resources: Sophie, Awen, Joe, Jodi, Benji and Anna
  • DIY Leaders who took part in the 4 by 8 programme: Charlotte, Amy, Scott, Viv, Georgia and Adam
  • partner organisations that hosted workshops: Springwood Primary, Chatsworth Futures and DIY’s Youth Drama Group.
  • Programme Coordinator: Sarah Atter
  • Youth Arts Coordinator: Molly Stedman
  • Youth Music for their funding of DIY’s 4 by 8 Inclusive Music Programme.

Youth Music logo