Don't you love Lois Ehlert's books? Her use of collage is so inventive, especially when transforming the images of everyday objects into something completely re-imagined. Who else would think to make a cat's teeth out of pumpkin seeds? So often as adults we become very strict in the way things should be perceived and done; things are very black and white. A child's imagination allows them to color their world however they want, with cranberry eyes and corncob ears, of course adapting to suit the occasion!
While a lot of her books simply use different types of paper to depict the subject, what I love about Boo to You! is the addition of photographed and Xeroxed images of some of her "favorite fall objects". Children naturally have the tendency to collect little things, and a walk around the block or an outing to the park can result in a treasure trove of art supplies. Put this scavenger trait to good use in creating these adorable little mice puppets for a Harvest Party Puppet Show.
Imagination is such a powerful tool and allows children to “see” how a simple seed or twig can be transformed into a multitude of fascinating items. When you let go and give your young reader the opportunity to express this ability you will build their confidence in their choices, their creative process, and the validity of their thoughts. Besides all that, it’s just plain fun!
Harvest Party Mouse Puppets
- paper plate
- white glue
- craft stick
- crayons, markers, or colored pencils
- construction paper
- fun foam
- nature items: seeds, seed pods, etc.
- Fold paper plate in half 3 times. Unfold and trace on fold lines with a marker or crayon.
- Have young reader cut on the traced lines to make 8 triangles.
- Color 2 triangles the same color for each mouse. One triangle will be the head and one will be the body.
- Using 2 triangles, assemble the head and body of each mouse puppet. Staple to secure.
- Now for the decorating! Choose a material for the eye: buttons, seeds, stickers, stamps, etc. And the ears: construction paper, fun foam, small leaves, whatever strikes your fancy. Attach with glue and allow to dry.
- For the arms and legs, we chose to use yarn. The fluidity of the yarn allows for movement as the puppet moves. Simply punch holes and tie lengths of yarn through each hole. We also knotted them at the end to prevent fraying. You could also use pipe cleaners, construction paper, or small twigs.
- For the tail we picked up seed pods on a nature walk and glued them to the back of the body.
- The final step is to glue a wooden craft stick to the back of the puppet and allow to dry.
- Let's put on a show!