The drums are a percussion instrument. Sound is produced by striking the head of the drum with a drum stick. Students will often start by learning on a practice pad (a small, light pad that makes little sound). Utilizing the pad they can learn stick control and learn how to read music.
Eventually they will upgrade to a full-size snare drum. The snare drum can be purchased as a kit that includes a stand, sticks, and carrying case. Because the drums are the loudest instrument, the drum section generally stands while they play in the back of the band.