I’m sharing crafts for kids this week, and today I have the creative, colorful, Capering Critter Hand Puppets. Kids can go to town on these, using their imaginations to decorate their fanciful creations. And then, the creative play continues as they parade their puppets on stage. Pair the Capering Critter Hand Puppets with the Wiggly Worm Marionette for a full ensemble!
To make a Capering Critter Hand Puppet, you’ll need:
- STYROFOAM™ Brand Foam:
- 4” egg
- 1-1/2” ball (green puppet) or 1” ball (red puppet)
- Scrap piece
- Acrylic craft paint in favorite colors
- Foamie sheets and shapes in assorted colors
- Construction paper in assorted colors
- Chenille stem, 12” (one per puppet)
- Embellishments: Buttons, beads, rick rack, sequins, ribbons, glitter, found items, etc.
- Thick, white craft glue
- Tools needed: Scissors; plastic knife; wood skewer; stiff paintbrush
To make a Capering Critter Hand Puppet:
1. Cut the foam egg in half lengthwise, and cut the ball in half, too. (Carefully supervise the kids as they cut the foam shapes in half with a plastic knife.)
2. The half balls are the eyes; experiment with the placement of the eyes, as you can get very different looks according to the placement. Glue the half balls to the wide end of the half egg.
3. Insert a wooden skewer into the puppet and use it as a handle while you paint the puppet. Paint the puppet. Insert the skewer into the scrap piece of foam to hold it upright while the paint dries.
4. Make the handles:
- Cut the chenille stem into two, 6″ pieces.
- Shape each piece into a U with 1-1/2” sides.
- Spread a small amount of glue on each end and push the ends into the bottom of the egg. Place the handles about 1-1/2” apart. Let the glue dry.
- To work the puppet, you will slip your hand through these handles.
5. Following the photos, decorate your puppet. Or, have fun creating a puppet with its own wild and wooly personality.
Every puppet needs a stage, like this dramatic Medieval Puppet Theater. Because it’s made from STYROFOAM Brand Foam, it’s made without power tools, and it’s light enough to carry from room to room. I share a few more puppets in this post, too.
I am a big puppet fan, from the making to the staging. I remember making puppets and putting on puppet shows as a kid. I even had a paid gig or two at children’s birthday parties. I also remember taking my daughter to her first live show with the traveling troupe from the Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia. My daughter was entranced as glow-in-the-dark, larger-than-life puppets re-enacted favorite Eric Carle story books. How about you? Are there any puppeteers in your home?