Written by Aparna Hari
Puppets inspire the baby to be active. These simple toys can inspire babies to have fun and teach them various skills too. From a basic peek-a-boo to more complex storytelling, you can inspire your baby in many ways. As your baby grows, you can let them play and explore various types of puppets. Puppet play for babies can be entertaining and educational. This is why they have been popular through the decades and continue to be so.
The biggest advantage of puppet play is that you need not spend big bucks on buying them for your munchkin. Homemade puppets will do as well as store-bought ones. Making puppets with your baby can be a fun and bonding activity too. Here are some reasons why you should start puppet play with your munchkin.
In This Article
A puppet is a moveable toy that you can control with the help of your fingers or strings. These toys can include figures of humans, animals, cartoon characters and even mythical characters; the possibilities are endless. A puppet can help parents play simple games with babies, teach them rhymes and stories and keep them entertained.
The best part is that you can make interesting puppets out of used paper, old socks and even left-over pieces of fabric. With a few sketch pens, your finger can turn into a puppet too. It is all up to your creativity to make a puppet playing session fun and educational for your little one.
There is no specific age to start puppets. The earliest you can start is at 3 months when your baby has better vision and can understand colors, distance and depth better. Puppet play never gets old. Older babies, toddlers, and older children are known to love puppet shows. As your baby gets older, you can expose them to more complex puppets, puppet shows and storytelling sessions.
[Read : When Do Babies Start Seeing Colors?]
Puppet play can be highly beneficial and educational for babies in their overall growth and development. Here are some of the important growth milestones that puppets can help your baby with.
Puppets can make story time, rhyme time and song time all the more interesting for babies. Once you get your little attracted to these sessions, they will pay much more attention to every word you utter. This will in turn improve their language skills as they pick up new words, expressions, songs and rhymes with ease.
Babies have a low attention span and can get distracted easily. You may find them wanting to wander off during a story session. But when you take the help of puppets, you are encouraging them to stay longer and pay attention which will help them improve on their listening skills.
As you put in more expressions and feelings when you narrate a story or a rhyme, your baby will be able to imbibe those emotions better. They will start to understand emotions such as happiness, anger and sadness. They will also start learning to respond to their own emotions as well as those around them.
Puppetry can improve creative skills in babies. As they grow older, they may show interest in holding the puppets and babbling seeming stories as an imitation of their story tellers, which can be parents or caregivers. Puppet-making sessions will also allow them to get creative and learn about colors, shapes and forms too.
Older babies may want to wear finger puppets, hand puppets and sock puppets and try storytelling. When they do this, they will move their fingers, hands, and legs with intention which will help them work on their gross and fine motor skills too.
[Read : Baby’s Gross Motor Skill Development]
Puppets are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, cartoons, and creations. Every type has its features and attributes suitable to the choices and comfort of the babies. Different types of puppets for babies include:
A hand puppet or a glove puppet, as the name suggests, is something you wear on your hand. It is generally made with cloth. Once you wear this puppet like a glove, you will be able to move your hands and fingers to relate a story or a rhyme.
These are the full-length puppets – caricatures of humans or animals controlled from above with the help of strings attached to them. These are specially designed to host big puppet shows and storytelling sessions.
Shadow puppets work on the principle of shadow, as the name suggests. Puppets will be placed in between a source of light and a screen to create a projection on the wall. This projection will be used to create an illusion of moving figures for the sake of telling a story.
A rod puppet is a full-length puppet that you will control with the help of wooden rods. While a string puppet will be controlled with the help of strings from the top, a rod puppet will be controlled with the help of wooden rods at the lower part of the toy. These rods run through the head and the complete body and control the movements of the hands and legs of the puppet.
These are very basic types of puppets and can be made easily at home with old socks. They can be useful for creating simple games with your toddler such as peek-a-boo and even hide and seek. Creating a puppet from your sock in the company of your baby can be fun and also sow the seeds of creativity in them from a very young age.
Puppets for babies are beneficial and entertaining. Start your young baby with basic finger puppets, sock puppets and stick puppets and watch them squeal with joy as you create stories out of thin air. With so many benefits, puppets can be excellent toys to invest in for your munchkin.
With puppets as friends, the babies can learn easily to inactivate and improve their learning through playing with the fine movement of eyes, and hands and using fingers to express enhances the fine motor coordination of the baby.
Any kind of puppet may awaken your baby’s smile, but hand puppets are lovable to kids. They are a fantastic way to actively participate in storytelling and creating role-play for babies.
Using puppets, a baby can express their emotion using a fun way which helps to socialize the baby to communicate well.
Her experience in impactful writing combined with her background in Home Sciences makes Aparna the perfect candidate for content writing in the pregnancy and parenting niche.Read more.
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