As Anne mentioned last week, we are splitting up Wednesdays among us to expand on local outings with some family fun at home. I volunteered for crafts. It took me having kids to re-connect with my “crafty” side. I love looking at Pinterest crafts; but I’m not big into directions or rules when it comes to creativity. Much of what I make isn’t pin-worthy. Kids have so much capacity for imagination, that they don’t really care about aesthetics. Which is good, because, although I could have made this upcycled TV into a beautiful puppet theatre, I settled for good enough.
Today’s craft isn’t super pretty. However, in the year since we made it, it has continually been one of my kids’ favorite toys — for all of them from toddler to preteen. They do puppet shows, news shows, plays; sometimes they turn it into a store. As an adult, I find it really tempting to make things other adults would appreciate, but when I step back, I realize the less I do to a project, the more my kids can engage in open-ended free play.
So, here is my story of how we made a big, ugly television into a big, ugly puppet theater (that my kids LOVE). And, at the end, I’m going to include a puppet show that we recently put together when we were playing around.
Follow up note: We kept this puppet theater for a couple years before its capacity for encouraging creative play became outweighed by its inconvenient size – not bad for a free toy.