Boom Boom Shake Sound Machine

Virtual Kid Quest Guide for an Outdoor Art Quest

In celebration of Earth Day, let’s get outside and make art from the world around us.

Greetings from a safe distance Quest-ers! We’re inviting you to take part in our first ever virtual Kid Quest! Modified from our museum adventure, we’ll still honor the format of exploring hands-on activities, learning about artwork in our galleries, and making an inspired art project.

As always, Kid Quest is an at-your-own-pace art adventure. In this case, take all the time you like with these activities. We can’t wait to see what you create with these prompts in your own homes, kitchen tables, or where ever you create!

When you are finished, take a photo and tag @PlainsArtMuseum on Instagram or Facebook.

Quest 1
Spring Senses!

Welcome, Spring! In the springtime, plants start growing and trees start budding. Birds begin singing and bunnies bounce about. The weather begins to warm up, and the sun melts the snow. Look around: what signs of spring do you see in the world around you? Sketch them or tell a family member what you observe.

Let’s hunt for signs of spring with more sensory exploration! Use all of your senses. Draw or describe…

  • 5 things that you see:
  • 4 things that you hear:
  • 3 things that you feel:
  • 2 things that you smell:
  • 1 thing that you might taste:

Quest 2
DIY Nature brushes

Gather some brush-like materials outside. Pine needles, grass, and thin leaves all work great! Now find a stick (chopsticks or pencils work great too) that you can hold in your hand. Using a rubber band, pipecleaner, or yarn, attach your “bristles” to your stick.Now it’s time to paint! Dip your natural brush in some paint and apply it to paper. What marks can you make? No paint? No Problem! see how these materials work with a little water and use the sidewalk, cardboard or wood fence. Compare and contrast the textures and patterns the natural bristles make.

Quest 3
Radial Symmetry

British artist Andy Goldsworthy creates art using natural materials. He creates his sculptures outside and leaves them in his environment. He often uses radial symmetry to make his sculptures. Radial symmetry is when the parts radiate from a central point.

Create your own outdoor sculpture using simple materials you find in the world around you. Rocks, leaves, sticks all work great! Be respectful of anything already blooming or growing!


You’ll want to collect some supplies before you get started, Artist Chelsea Odden shows in this video some different variations of a sound machine with materials you can find at home. This list is helpful, but you might find some other alternatives or modifications to the project! That’s great as your imagination is essential!

  • Drum body: Paper plates, Paper bowls, Egg cartoon, Yogurt cups
  • Items to make sound: Dry beans, Rice, Dry pasta, Nuts with shell, Paper, Tinfoil
  • To decorate: Plastic bags, String,Beads, Yarn, Colored tape, Markers, Stickers, Paper
  • Tools: Scissors, Tape, Stapler, Tacky glue

Listen! (and watch)

We planned to share two exhibitions with you. Even if you can visit them in person today, we want you to know about them.

In our first floor Atrium, we have the three dimensional and interactive work by artists Clementine Bordeaux, Mary V. Bordeaux, and Layli Long Soldier from Racing Magpie Gallery in Rapid City, South Dakota.

The exhibition is called: Responsibilities and Obligations: Understanding Mitákuye Oyásʼin

This video shows the installation in another space, but you get to see the patterns, animals and videos used in this installation.

We planned to have you stop in our Second Floor Gallery to see the exhibition She Gives: Work by Dyani White Hawk. This video shows the artist Dyani White Hawk in her studio. Make note of the color, materials, and pattern she uses in her work!

Did any of the artists or artwork in the videos make you think of other materials you might add to your own studio?


Create your own sound machine with the materials and inspiration you’ve collected. When you are finished, take a photo and tag @PlainsArtMuseum on Instagram or Facebook.

Kid Quest is made possible by a grant from Xcel Energy, with additional support from Minnesota Public Radio.