Starting preschool is a new chapter for both your child and you as a parent, you want to do whatever you can to make your little one’s transition into preschool easier. Puppets serve as a great buffer between your child and any possible nerves they may have about starting preschool, and they also improve your child’s motor skills and imagination. Here are some benefits that learning with puppets have for your child
- Puppet play boosts confidence, it helps kids let go of some of their inhibitions, especially in a classroom setting. It’s the adult equivalent of being nervous in a new situation, or talking in front of a crowd. Talking through a puppet gives children the confidence they need to read or talk out loud in class.
- Kids who are shy, lonely or withdrawn often have imaginary friends, but having a puppet alongside them for the first few days or weeks at preschool has the power to bring that imaginary friend to life, in the form of the puppet. The new friend can be there for your child, to cuddle and talk to.
- Learning and playing with puppets stimulates imagination, and imagination is the key to get their little creative minds working. From everyday situations to elaborate plays, your child can have their imagination running wild with different scenarios that can help them cope with the anxiousness of starting preschool. Your child will also have the opportunity to engage in creative arts, and encouraging them to make their own puppets.
- It is also a good idea to allow your child to dress up their own finger(s) and engage in unstructured play, so that whatever challenges they are having at the moment, can be vented in the puppet show, or in a puppet dialogue. For some children, it is easier to express feelings and emotions through puppet learning, or through playtime.
- Learning with puppets also improves and stimulates your child’s motor skills, so have them paint their own finger or put on a puppet and do as much movement as they want. The constant wriggling, pretend laughing and “walking” teaches your child how to move their finger and when, which in turn connects the dots in their brain and coordinates hand-brain coordination.
- A puppet can be made to be a fun authority figure, younger children sometimes don’t want to take orders from parents or teaches, but having a fun puppet help show them the difference between good and bad behavior, and the consequences, will go a long way in ensuring that your child remembers the lesson taught well after it is done.
Puppets can also sing, tell different stories and dance, all in the name of making learning easier and more fun. So, get some old socks, crafts and paint, and have your child jump into a world of learning with puppets – it’s easier than you think and you’ll enjoy it too.