Dress up and role play: involve a hand puppet!

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Dressing up, role-playing and playing that puts you in someone else’s shoes are activities familiar to many of us. I loved it as a child, and I still enjoy it today. By stepping into a role, you discover new sides of yourself, practice skills and dare to do things you wouldn’t dare to do as yourself (yet). Play is a way to push boundaries, learn, grow and, above all, have fun.

Discover the Power of Role Play:

When children play with hand puppets, you often see role plays develop. The child invents scenarios in which the hand puppet and the child both play a role. In this way, the child shapes his/her own reality and can re-live a situation. The hand puppet acts as a safe counterpart, with the child determining what the puppet brings out.

Hand Puppets as Pedagogical Tools:

With the hand puppet as an educational tool, the hand puppet assumes the role of “friend,” someone similar to the child. In this setting, role plays can still be a valuable addition. The friend may suggest playing a game together, where the child and the puppet can alternate between the roles of, say, a pilot, a veterinarian or a superhero. Adding props and costumes makes the game more challenging and real. This allows the puppet to add new impulses to play and challenge the child.

Who, What and How: To work more purposefully with hand puppets in role plays, it is important to know who your puppet is, what you want to achieve and how you want to do it. Think about the roles your puppet can play and what qualities go with them. Ask yourself the questions: Who is your puppet? What do you want to achieve? How does your puppet get from A to B? These questions will help you create a plan and provide an effective and playful interaction with the puppet.

Conclusion: Dressing up, role-playing and playing with hand puppets offer children the opportunity to explore, learn and grow. The hand puppet acts as a playmate and helps develop imagination, social interaction and explore different roles. Enrich the game by adding props and costumes, stimulating the child’s creativity. Discover the magic of dressing up, role-playing and hand puppets and enjoy the fun.

Try it out and find out what it brings you.

Thank you for reading and your time, and until another blog.

I'm a teacher, trainer, developer, hand puppetcoach and author of the book "The Handpuppet as an educational tool". I want to inspire you and help you to use a puppet in class. I'm sure the hand puppet makes a big difference in the life of a child, but also in your life. I hope you're gonna enjoy that just as much as I am.

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