Program Description: Purposeful Puppets – Creating a puppet involves deliberate and thoughtful planning. Scale, dimension, texture, color, materials, and movement are considered. We start with a story, theme or subject. The ultimate goal is to create a puppet that through movement and voice will dramatize or impart information on a said particular story, theme or subject. Students use simple materials to create a puppet of their choice, which will be used to dramatize stories created by teams of students.
Using simple materials (usually socks, fabrics, decorative items, and recyclables) and a variety of construction techniques, students will design and build a puppet. They will experience the pleasure of creating out of a hodge-podge of whatnots and perhaps learn a new skill such as sewing. This new life form intimately connected with the student is the vehicle by which a new thought, idea, information or feeling is experienced and expressed through simple puppet presentations behind the puppet theater.
K-2nd Grades: Creative dramatics at play! Imagination and play acting are the key to unlocking some of the world’s mysteries which help children navigate their world and understand it better. A week filled with puppets, stories, music, and movement spells success as your shining stars explore your particular theme. Past themes have included fairy tales, weather, insects, farm animals, harvest time with pumpkins, apples, and scarecrows. We also explored the Chinese culture. Have a different theme? I’m happy to brainstorm an Experience customized just for your students! Each child participates daily as both audience member and performing puppeteer. Each day will feature a new puppet character and a “mini show” by Miss Becky.
3rd-8th Grades: ELA and Visual Arts: Choosing favorite characters from books and making them into puppets is a great way to understand a story and the complexities of human nature. Giving the puppet ensemble voice by acting out a variety of scenes is rewarding and fun! Students can identify a character’s traits and find ways to construct their puppet in a way that makes those traits visual.
7th-8th Grades: Physical Science: Quantum mechanics and puppets? Yes! Students will design and create high-functioning puppets based on basic principles of quantum mechanics: hello, Helium! Then we put our characters into action as students produce short original plays or musical lyrics using key words and theories to entertain the middle school brain in clever and entertaining ways!
Puppets can work beautifully with just about every subject. If you have an idea and the desire to bring the pleasure and rewards of puppetry to your students let’s make a plan!
See an interview with Becky on Wonder Teacher.