Saturday, January 21, 2012

Designing Puppets Based on Folktales

After creating practice puppets to understand how shadow puppets are put together, students in the 3rd and 4th grade are now creating shadow puppets of their own design based on folktales and fables.  We are using Rudyard Kipling and Aesop's fables as our main source of story.  
Traditional Indonesian shadow puppet
Students from each class are working in groups. Each group has its own story and each student is creating a character within that story. 

The first step was for students to read the stories aloud and identify who the characters are and who would create each character. They also summarized the story.  Next, students learned about the words characteristic and trait, and they brainstormed four characteristics their puppet would have. 

Next, the students created a sketch for what they thought their puppet could look like.  Some students used pictures of animals as a reference.   I also talked to students about how they should plan ahead of time, and be thinking about which part of the puppet would move. 

Students showed their thinking and plan for how their puppet will move by drawing circles to indicate where they will use paper fasteners to create a movable joint.  

Currently, the students are drawing their design on thicker card stock, being sure to draw their moving parts separately.  The students are doing a lot of problem solving to create successful puppets.

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