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At Home Theater Level 3: Puppet Making

Puppets are a great tool to help children use their imagination, convey emotions, and develop fine motor skills! At Home Play Tips - Theater - Sponsored by M&T Bank

Check out these fun and simple ways to create puppets using household items. Then once you create the star of the show, encourage your little ones to develop skills and confidence using their puppets to put on a show just for you!

Step #1 Create the puppets

Use Old Clothing

  • Encourage children to use scarves or other fabrics and move these objects in different ways to see if they can replicate water (large and slow movements), wind (small and fast movements). See what other objects they can mimic with their scarves.
  • Convert old socks into puppets buy using string, buttons, or felt to make fun and creative characters.
  • Use plastic gloves as a simple and easy way to create finger puppets by marking each finger with a funny or imaginative face.

Puppets with Paper

  • Paint or draw a character for the show then cut the creation out and attach a stick. Another fun idea is to take pictures of characters and animals cut them out and then fasten them to a stick.
  • Paper bags are also a creative way to introduce puppets. Add arms to the side and use string and colored paper to create the puppets face and hair.
  • A fun way to encourage movement with your puppets is to draw animals such as elephants or dogs and cut holes where legs, tails, or trunks should be. Then place your fingers through the holes and have them act out the different parts of the animal.

Step #2: Practice with Puppets

  • Using favored toys, stuff animals, and dolls allows a child to use the connection with their object to develop a different personality voice and goals.
  • Ask the child open-ended questions about their animal and doll to help them develop their characters
  • Use the puppets body, face, voice to convey different emotions such as happy, sad, angry, or scared.

Step #3 Putting on the Play 

  • Need a stage for the performance? Try using a table with a cloth to cover your performer or performing behind a couch.
  • Encourage your children to interact in their play and costar with their new friends!


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