Sunday, November 1, 2015

Reading Strategy

Paper Bag Puppets

and a Whole Lot More!

One of my favorite ways to teach reading skills is with paper bag puppets.

Here's How it All  Started...One year, I was looking for something fun to introduce questioning.  I really wanted to spice up my reading lessons.  I decided to make a bag puppet and name her
“The Questioning Queen”.  She was such a big hit with my class and with my colleagues’ classes, that I decided to make more.  
There are now 8 paper bag puppet to go with the following skills:
  • Story Elements with Story Elements Sam
  • Retelling with Retelling Rita
  • Predicting with The Predicting Pirate
  • Visualizing withThe Visualizing Vampire
  • Questioning with The Questioning Queen
  • Characterization with The Character Commander
  • Making Connections with The Connection Cat
  • Making Inferences with The Inference Investigator
A this time, I am planning to make a script for each puppet so you can put on a skit for your students.  I do it using the voices and the kids truly love it.  I haven’t found the time to write it down, but I will, soon!

Using a special voice for each puppet, it's easy to put on a little skit.  This puppet has a British accent like The Queen of England.  At first I was a bit apprehensive about doing the voices that I wasn't very good at, but you know what, they didn't care.  I will say that my students have never been so engaged during a mini lesson! 

Questioning Queen Paper Bag Puppet with Poster

My students get so excited every time I introduce a new reading skill using one of these STRATEGY PUPPETS . 

 Each puppet has a poster with the paper bag character giving information about the skill.  When they use the voices to read the poster, it is hilarious.... and such a fun way to learn.

At the beginning of the year, I have them all hanging on a bulletin board with the poster turned over so they can't see it. The puppets are there beside the blank poster to spark their attention. This builds excitement and curiosity. By the end of the first grading period, almost all of the posters have been revealed.  The day I'm going to introduce a new skill, I'll turn the poster over and they know the minute they walk into the room.  Let the fun begin!

 My Bulletin with all of the posters turned back over.

Upon introducing each skill, the students and I create an Anchor Chart with the exact thinking stems that will be on the bag puppet that they make.  See complete Puppet Wall above and a couple of completed anchor charts.  Story Elements Sam and Retelling Rita are new to the puppet wall.  After creating them, I decided to go back and make all of the student puppets to fit onto one page. I left the original puppets in the file just in case someone was enjoying them. 

This file also contains graphic organizers, anchor charts, strategy sticks, and mentor text lists for each skill.


Whether you use a Reader's Workshop model or a different style of teaching reading, you can't miss with these paper bag puppets and all the fun stuff included with them.

Get Predicting Pirate for free!
 Thank you for stopping by!  Have a great week!