When I think about puppets, my mind immediately goes to the Muppet Show! I mean those two old guy puppets at the top of the balcony, Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzi Bear, Gonzo, Animal the drummer, and I can go on and on.
I bet some of you went down memory lane with those names. The variety show of The Muppets was a hit and has popularized puppets all over the world.
Many of us bought plush puppets to entertain our little ones as babies. It is almost a staple for any nursery. However, that is not the only way to use puppets at home.
If you are a homeschooler, using puppets-and even learning to make them-easily adds a great benefit to your young learner’s experience as you teach. Your lessons at home can come to life by using puppets in your homeschool.
Using puppets in some of your lessons can help you with your nerves, help your kids remember, and help make the lessons fun. We can use as much help as we can in homeschool, Amen?
There are some very useful ways we can use puppets in our homeschool to maximize our children’s learning potential.
Here are a few ways we can engage our kids exponentially by using puppets to enhance learning:
When children are young, one of the most effective ways to engage them in their learning experience is through telling them stories.
This is actually where the love of reading can begin for your children, by reading them stories. The thing is, with adding puppets to your story, it can make any dull story interesting.
Some parents dread reading out loud, yet somehow using puppets makes things less stressful and awkward. I mean we can get sleepy ourselves ready bedtime stories, but if you are walking your finger puppet down the yellow brick road, it helps keep you as engaged as your child.
Getting kids excited about reading with puppets creates kids that will enjoy reading on their own.
Here are some ideas and books to use puppets with:
The Lorax Paper Bag Puppet and FREE Printable | The Inspiration Edit
Nursery Rhyme Stick Puppet Props | Spell Out Loud
F Is for Storytelling Finger Puppets | Playground Park Bench
Put Me in the Zoo Paper Bag Leopard Puppet Craft | Glued to My Crafts
Itsy Bitsy Toddler Spider Activity (That Turns into A Puppet!) | Teaching 2 and 3 year olds
Sensory Storytelling Spoons For We’re Going On A Bear Hunt | The Imagination Tree
Paper Handprint Fox In Socks – Kid Craft Puppet | Glued to My Crafts
2. Create puppets for crafts.
When kids make their own puppets and use them in a story you are learning about, it gives them a stake in their own learning process.
Creating does so much for our kids. Giving them free rein to create with a specific goal in mind allows them to use their imagination while following the rules or instructions.
All you have to do is buy a few long white socks, some craft materials, and some googly eyes from the craft shop, and your kids are on their way to making the silliest sock puppets ever. Of course, you can use popsicle sticks and cardstock cutouts just as easily for puppets.
Here are some puppet ideas for you to use and create as crafts or activities from home.
Puppets for Beginners Through Advanced | A2Z Homeschooling
4 Types of Puppets That are Easy to Make with Your Kids | Empowered Parents
Puppet Activities for Children | Nurture Store
DIY Sock Puppets | Taking Care of Monkey Business
5 Ideas for Early Learning with Puppets | Homebound nut Hopeful
FREE Printable Puppets | Lets Play Kids Music
Fabulous FREE Printable Puppets for Kids | Picklebums
3. Use puppets to enhance new topics in history, geography, or social studies.
You can add art and crafts to your history, geography, or social studies lessons by making puppets.
Studying about Indonesia? No worries. Need to add some art or crafts to your Thanksgiving lessons about the Pilgrims? We have you covered.
Check out these different puppet ideas for making your history, culture, geography, and social studies lessons engaging and creative for your homeschool kids.
Make Your Own Indonesian Wayang Puppets | Layers of Learning
Abeka Academy Homeschool Art Pilgrim Puppets Project | Little House in Southwoods
4. Social interaction and conflict resolution.
By using puppets, kids can practice using learned skills to be prepared to interact with other people and learn to deal with conflict in a healthy way.
So many times, our kids are presented with situations in which they cannot find an immediate positive reaction to.
Whether it be bullying, drugs, or just what to expect at the doctor’s office, puppets provide a safe atmosphere for kids to be comfortable with reactions and options on next steps, decisions, or possible outcomes.
Learning to deal with situations in a non-threatening them empowers them to be aware and be at ease with new issues that may arise.
5. Add puppets to your animal and science units.
Kids love learning about animals. Making puppets of those animals they are studying is a great addition to your lessons.
Handprint Fish Puppets – Kid Craft Idea | Glued to my Crafts
Shadow Science Physics Activity with Animal Silhouette Puppets (FREE Printable) | Little Bins Little Hands
Exploring Light with DIY Shadow Puppets | Where Imagination Grows
FREE Farm Animal Puppets | Happy and Blessed Home
Sheep Craft: DIY Popsicle Stick Puppets | Big Family Blessings
Planet Puppets Printable for Kids | Modern Homestead Mama
Animal Popsicle Puppets: A Fun and Educational Preschool Activity | Bilingual Beginnings
6. Bible stories and character training can be more memorable with puppets.
Joseph and the Coat of Many Colors Puppet | PreKinders
Puppets and the Olympics Teach Respect | Inspiration Laboratories
7. Have fun with learning using puppets:
JOKES WITH PUPPETS! – Funny Puppet Show | Books with Bekah
3-Colour Activity with Egg Puppets | Homeschool AEC
Making Puppets Talk: 3 Ways to Use Puppets to Build Communication | Kidz Learn Language
Puppets that Teach Content | Wonder Teacher
Superhero Craft – DIY Puppets | Big Family Blessings
Rhymes for Kids: One Elephant Went out to Play (FREE finger puppets!) | The Measured Mom
Five Little Monkeys Finger Puppets | Playdough to Plato
3 Unique Ways to Use Puppets in Speech Therapy | Allison Fors
FREE Printable 5 Senses For Kids Puppets To Teach Children | Simple Everyday Mom
4 Ways to Use A Puppet at Home for Learning | Parenting the Principal
If you have never thought of adding puppets as a tool to your homeschool lessons for little ones, I hope you see how beneficial it can be. Using puppets in your homeschool is more important than you think.
Puppets can, from a very early age, help your children with emotional skills, social skills, listening skills, motor skills, and self-confidence, and they serve as great additions to lessons at home.
Jeannette is a wife, mother and homeschooling mom. She has been mightily, saved by grace and is grateful for God’s sovereignty throughout her life’s journey. She has a Bachelor in English Education and her MBA. Jeannette is bi-lingual and currently lives in the Tongan Islands of the South Pacific. She posts daily freebies for homeschoolers!