Puppetry aims at creating a teaching practice that is fully informed by state-of-the-art academic research and keeping its resources and techniques up to date.
On instructional grounds, the method is based on Loris Malaguzzi’s constructivist Reggio Emilia philosophy informed by theorists like Piaget, Erikson, Dewey, Vygotsky and Biber. Its affective approach to teaching, positive view of the child and emergent curriculum, together with the “hundred languages of children”, are key to our approach.
The Reggio principles - that learning is purposeful, social, emotional, empowering and representational, - are the groundstones of this puppet method. The puppet method also draws on Gardner’s multiple intelligences, which abandons the traditionally limited view on intelligence, allowing space for interpersonal and intrapersonal skills.
The social assumption of this project is informed by multicultural education, and anti-bias principles, drawing on Jim Cummins transformative/ intercultural pedagogy which goes beyond “celebrating diversity” by promoting self-awareness and linking student experience to broader social issues encouraging them to take action. Puppetry seeks to apply this in practice by inviting children to reflect on their feelings and actively build relationships with peers while also gaining awareness of certain social matters early in life, through personal experience.
At Puppetry, we chose puppets as our main teaching aid because, used as mediators, puppets can act as effective tools in approaching children and helping our team carry out a months-long affection-based teaching method, giving not just a frame but also continuity to the activities. Contrary to adults, children see the puppet as a friend, someone they can relate to and project their feelings onto. Such a process makes our work and the other activities all the more effective.