Mariner students master bucket drumming

Rhythmic music style engages aspiring drummers
April 9, 2019

A new musical endeavor is drumming up interest at Mariner Middle, where music teacher Julie Keefer turned to bucket drumming as a unique way to engage students. “I wanted to find something they would enjoy,” she said. “In middle school, everyone aspires to be some kind of drummer.”

Bucket drumming is modeled on street performers who drum on plastic buckets, glass bottles, pots, pans and other objects. At Mariner Middle, students use drumsticks and five-gallon orange buckets donated by Home Depot.

Keefer said students first learned note values by playing rhythm basketball, bouncing balls in tune to music notes, before they got to the buckets. Students said they enjoyed playing on the buckets, and found the most difficult part transitioning from one rhythm to the next.

Keefer said bucket drumming supplies are cheap and easy to obtain. “Bucket drumming is fun for everyone,” she said. “And, it’s something they can all also do outside of the classroom.”