Term: 2 Year: 2014
Rutherglen Primary School combine cultural studies, art elements and recycled materials into the creation of these dancing Emu marionettes.
Year Levels: 1-2
AusVELS level: 1-2
Duration of Unit: 3 weeks
Learning Focus from AusVels Level 1-2:
Exploration of effective ways to use elements such as colour or shape to communicate imagined ideas and places
Unit Learning Focus:
Exploration of effective ways to use elements such as colour or shape to communir or shape to communicate imagined ideas and places
Unit Assessment Standards Level 2:
Creating and making: They use skills, techniques, processes, media, materials, equipment and technologies in a range of art forms.
Exploring and responding: NA
Teaching & Learning Activities
Exploring & Responding
We talked about marionettes and what they looked like. We talked about the eyes and how they can give each puppet an individual personality.
Creating & Making
These marionettes were simply constructed for grade 1-2’s as they were investigating Australian Animals in their class studies. The inspiration came to me from a puppet shop in Echuca called the Dancing Emu. I felt that I could achieve a simple form of the puppet that the grade 1-2’s could make with minimal assistance.
The children brought in an old pair of stockings or tights – we found that the tights were better as they were stronger. We cut off one leg and knotted this inside the body. We then used the remaining leg for the neck and head and the body from the pants part of the stockings.
We stuffed the head with shredded paper and screwed up newspaper for the body. Everything was tied and knotted. Knots in the neck and legs help to give the look of moving parts. Weaving needles were used to thread the strings through the puppet.
The feet were made from plastic pot plants and small yoghurt containers.
We talked a lot about the eyes of the puppet and how that helps to give the puppet character and expression. After some modelling ideas the children then used felt to create their eyes.
Next they started to glue their feathers with pva.
I was particularly pleased with their use of the feathers to create the ‘bird’ look. Each puppet soon took on its own personality.
It was important to have the strings already attached so we could hang the emus to ‘dry’.
This week we spent finishing off the puppets’ faces, feathers and strings.
The children loved making these and loved giving them names and making them ‘dance’ even more’!
Resources and Materials
Stockings – plain for the body, tie dyed
Newspaper / shredded paper
Felt for the eyes.
Glue – PVA
Stiff Cardboard – was used to attach the strings.
Link with other domains
Science: These marionettes were simply constructed for grade 1-2’s as they were investigating Australian Animals in their class studies.
Cross Curricular Priorities
Use of recycled materials. Old stockings, yoghurt containers for feet.
Link with Personal, Social and Physical Domain
How can you make your puppet truly individual? How can you work your puppet?