Oral narrations are quick and easy and especially enjoyable when presented with novel ideas.
We create finger puppets and present plays and dialogues.
It is especially good when practicing a second language.
When children are self-conscious, puppets divert their attention from themselves and all eyes (including their own) are on the puppets.
Young children really live themselves in the puppet show. It seems real to them.
Older children focus on detail. They often want to include props, sound effects and background. (I don’t mind so long as they have a reasonable time limit and get on with the real drama!)
That is why finger puppets are suitable for last-minute plans – they are quick!
I often ask who wants to make and act the main characters and then I share out all the secondary characters and important props.
I let the children swap puppets and re-enact the play so that they all can have a turn being the main character. (Sneaky – I get at least 2 full narrations and if there was rehearsals, then even 4 repeats = lots of practice and review! :)
Here are our Afrikaans finger puppets for the New South African version of Jack and the Beanstalk!
It took just 5 or so minutes to sketch, colour and cut out our pictures.
You’ll notice we all drew our own puppets. You could make templates using pictures from the story books.
We then attached the finger band with a strip of paper and cellotape.
And with each of us using about 3 puppets, we acted out the story!
After we had acted out the story, the kids pasted the puppets on their notebook pages.
When they want to re-use the finger puppets they paste an envelope on the page and insert the finger puppets in the pocket. They insert the envelope flap into the pocket to keep the pieces safely inside.
Older children write out the dialogue.
Some more ideas:
History – We re-enacted the appeals, revolutions, war councils and peace treaties.
You can also make simple puppets by pasting pictures on ice-cream sticks. Store these in a flat box.
We used Lego hole-punched puppets – we narrated the poem Lady Of Shalot
Make rubber glove finger puppets as seen at Little Lovely
Create rod puppets I found at We Bloom Here
Updates: Here’s some more –
I found a wonderful cereal box and stick puppets tutorial at Red Birds Crafts
And Tea Wagon Tales shares their gorgeous toilet roll family.
Try this! Have fun with your narrations!
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