Puppets are magical toys and a source of motivation to young children. Would you believe your preschooler might talk to a puppet in a situation where he won’t talk to you? A puppet can become your child’s best friend. Stick puppets are only one form of this art, plus they’re fun to make. So, let’s collect a variety of materials and turn on our imaginations to create some pretty unique characters.
Story Stick Characters
Draw story characters on heavy paper or cardboard and color them with crayons or makers. Hint: it’s easy to cut out story characters from children’s coloring books. Cut the figures out and attach them to craft sticks with tape or heavy glue. Use this project to enhance favorite stories. Then, preschoolers can experiment with creative storytelling on their own.
Turkey Stick Puppet
Trace your child’s hand on brown construction paper. Cut out the hand shape. Invite your little gobbler to color the tall fingers with crayons in a variety of colors to create the turkey’s feathers. Draw a turkey face on the thumb. Attach a craft stick to the back as a holder. Use this puppet as a prop when singing turkey songs or reciting fingerplays. Use handprints as other puppets, such as a flower, jellyfish, ghost or reindeer. How many other characters can you think of?
Photo Stick Puppets
Bring out the box of family photos and choose a few to make puppets. It’s best to make color copies than cut up original pictures. Invite your child to cut along the silhouette of the photo and glue this to a wooden craft stick. Use these puppets with young children for family recognition and training preschoolers in conversational speaking. There is nothing better than being a puppeteer and having your family puppets converse with one another!
Make puppets from wooden or plastic spoons. Raid the junk box for fun materials such as faux fur, yarn for wigs, fabric remnants for clothing, cotton for hair or beards and pipe cleaners twisted for arms. Use felt-tip markers for facial features. Your child can make a host of characters from spoons to put on a creative puppet show.
Drinking Straw Puppet
Don’t throw away Styrofoam produce trays from the supermarket. Instead, use these to cut out shapes and figures to make puppets. To make a magic wand, cut a star shape from a tray. Add glitter glue along the edges for sparkle and tape the shape to a plastic drinking straw for the handle. Using recyclable materials not only saves you money from having to head to the craft store, it’s also better for the environment.