The play-of-the-day is making some ghost puppets for telling ghost stories; that should be easy, right? Like Halloween, there are some tricks to the craft.
Trick #1 is to find an old white or light grey sock. Usually, this wouldn’t be a problem at our house because there’s a bag of old and worn out socks or newer but only one-of-the-pair loners. But the bag had no white socks. We’d used some of them in the winter to make snowballs for throwing indoors. Maybe they melted? Then, we’d used some in the spring and summer to make Olaf the Snowman. That left only black socks, which would make bats and spiders, but not ghosts. To save the project, we temporarily used a good pair–of mine.
Trick #2 is where to put the eyes. To make the puppet talk, the heel part of the sock must be in the front. The puppet looks better with the heel hiding in the back, but I know from experience, that the thumb needs the space of the hell in order to make a mouth that moves. Also from experience, the eyes can’t be too low or they end up moving as part of the mouth. If they are too high, they look too far away from the mouth. It’s a good think these eyes were only getting attached with safety pins instead of being sewn or glue on because we had to try 4 or 5 times to get them in the right spot.
Trick #3 is optional. We used a bit of white yarn to tie around the top of the sock to make the pointy part of the head.
Now comes the treat part. Puppet play encourages lots of conversations. Kids can talk to their ghost by themselves, use them to tell a story, or talk to another puppet. Sometimes, kids will use different voices and carry both sides of the conversation.
Another treat is the opportunity for kids to imagine. Imagination is a skill that kids can develop by imagining. For kids that are hesitant, ask them questions like does their ghost have a name, what does it do, where does it go, and more. Usually, once they get started, kids will become more comfortable with imagining.
Puppets don’t have to stay in one place. They can move around, get some exercise, and maybe even go outside for a fresh air treat or maybe an adventure one!
Puppet play is full of both tricks and treats. Any ghost sock puppets at your house?