Puppet play introduces the child to multiple forms of play and creative activities. Such play enables the child to actively acquire and use the abilities important for communication and expression. They also direct the child in his or her way. Through puppet play, the child uses his independence, freedom, imagination, experiences, and feelings. The game process leads to explore, discover different possibilities and solutions to problems. At that moment, the child manifests and fulfills all the inner needs and things that are inherent to him. In the puppet play is the most important process and it respects the basic principles of children’s play and learning through experience.
The goals of the puppet play are:
- in the very processes of the game
- in playing “for yourself”
- in children’s experience and children’s creative expression
- in an interaction that creates and enables the active participation of all present.
Jean Piaget theory
Through puppet play, children develop creative and cognitive skills, motivating them to use their imaginations. They make roles, create rules, situations, and find solutions. Playing through imaginative play, children see the differences between fantasy and reality. Kids who can transform the real world become more real. The doll can motivate, give occasion to even the quietest children to start a conversation. Puppets can break down barriers, blockages, and provide an excellent situation, an atmosphere to start communication with. The child has confidence in the doll and does not feel threatened, making it the perfect neutral medium through which they can discuss sensitive issues. Through the puppet, the child can express thoughts, fears, and feelings that would otherwise be difficult for the child to explain to adults.
The impact of doll play on the child
Social skills: Increasing communication and social skills while interacting with a doll.
Emotional Development: Using a doll, children talk about how they feel, what bothers them, or can and use the doll as a friend to talk to.
Reading and Speaking: Helps children read and be confident in performing.
Creativity: Using puppets, kids can invent stories, songs, and more.
Motor skills: dolls encourage children to use both small and large motor skills.
Puppets can help children with special educational
- Can motivate and support children who have communication and interaction difficulties,
- Help develop their social and motor skills,
- Meet the visual, tactile, and emotional needs of the individual child.
Puppets with gloves and fingers can be used in combination with different types of marks, which gives extra vision to help children who have hearing difficulties and learning disabilities.
Puppets come to life as characters and they can:
- – Show different personalities and different traits
- – To share joy or sadness; they can be naughty or good, funny or shy;
- – The child can learn the lessons without realizing it.
Puppet play gives the essential connection between learning and play, making them wonderful teaching tools for the home, preschool, classroom, and the wider community. A doll is a symbolic object manipulated by a puppeteer; these are often figures representing human or animal forms. The movements of the dolls are directed by the movements of the hands, sticks, or strings. The most popular types of dolls for young children are dolls with sticks and hands, finger puppets.
Dolls are a great way to:
- Entertaining children while driving in a car, plane,
- Showing puppets everything they see or using a puppet to sing songs, tell stories or play games,
- Learning about family relationships, friendship, culture, etc.
- Language learning, vocabulary enhancement,
- Interpreting interaction with others,
- Developing imagination.
Amanda Powell, Introduction of puppet-play
MI Stronger Family, Michigan State University