Hit every plate with the mallet (the ‘club’). Each of them emits a different sound from the musical scale. Make the xylophone play by hitting the plates closer to their upper ends or to their centres. Examine how the sound pitch changes with the change of the spot you hit.
The xylophone is tuned within one octave. You can play a simple melody:
g e e f d d c e g or
c d e c c d e c e f g e f g g a g f e c or
e e f g g f e d c c e d ddd e c d e f e c d e f e d c d g.
How does it work
Xylophone comes from a family of self sounding instruments. - so called idiophones. The bar, when struck, vibrates and emits a sound wave dependent on the bar’s length. The shorter the bar, the higher the pitch.
The first European depiction of xylophone can be seen in one of woodcuts from the 1523 Dance of Death cycle by Hans Holbein the Younger.