How to Make Your Own Puppet Theaters and Finger Puppets

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by: Janice Wee

Your kids can make a puppet theater and an assortment of puppets all by themselves.

Materials Needed

  • a table for the theater
  • a cloth that can cover the front and sides of the table, leaving the back exposed
  • some stiff white cardboard or colored paper depending on the type of puppet they want to make
  • pencils and coloring materials
  • scissors
  • glue
  • sticky tape

I admit that this theater is nowhere near the kids puppet theaters you can get at Still, for the budget conscious, your kids can still get their makeshift puppet theater if you do it yourselves. A bonus is that your kids would be busy for hours just making their puppets. Ideal if you are broke and have with a bunch of kids that need to be kept out of mischief.

For the puppets, finger puppets are ideal for starters. My 6 year old boy thought up this puppet design all by himself. He used colored paper, wrapped loosely around a finger. He taped the the paper shut, loose enough so he could put on or take off the puppets as he wished. Then he drew a face on the tip of the puppet. His elder brother liked that design and helped him make a variety of such finger puppets with different colors and different expressions.

The puppets I had initially taught them to make required much more work. Here's how you can make some simple puppets.

  1. Decide on the story line, the characters and what puppets are needed for the show.
  2. Draw pictures of these characters on stiff white cardboard. Each picture has to be just big enough to cover 1 finger.
  3. Color the pictures.
  4. Cut out these pictures.
  5. Cut a white strip of cardboard about half an inch thick, 1 and a half inches long. This is going to be like a ring around the child's finger, attached to the puppet so that your kid can make the puppet move around.
  6. Form a circle with the white strip.
  7. Glue this circle behind the picture so that a finger can go through it to support the puppet.
  8. Let the glue dry completely and you have your finger puppets.


Once you have enough puppets, you can make the theater.

The Puppet Theater

Spread the cloth over the table, so that the front and sides are completely covered, but the back of the table is fully exposed. That covered table is the puppet theater.

The children can hide behind the theater, put on the finger puppets on their fingers, lift their hands over their heads to perform the puppet show. Pay attention when your kids perform their puppet show for you. Participate when they ask you to. Your attention means a lot to them.

About The Author
Janice Wee is the webmaster of which features the toys that kids really like, some of which are highly educational.