Ah, the magic of wee puppets. These little companions are my helpers who whimsically deliver messages and stories with ease. Why? Because they speak the language of childhood; imagination. A funny fact about me is that i mostly likely have a little friend in my pocket any day of the week. Nibbler mouse, busy bee, a wiggly worm or cottontail the bunny have accompanied me on countless adventures as a teacher, a mother and all around lover of children. Nibbler mouse used to live in my apron pocket when I had a LifeWays play garden in my home. He would come out after all of the rice and crumbs were swept off the table top and put into a tiny bowl just the right size for a mouse. Nibbler mouse always ate his share and thanked the children for giving him all the bits that jumped out of their bowls. Pocket puppets have been a remedy to a long car ride, connecting to a new friend, waiting in an airport or being in a new place. It's also nice to weave in a moment of your day outdoors into your night time routine. Perhaps if you saw a honeybee, you might find a few words to share..."and after the honeybee gathered all of the pollen that the flowers gave, she buzzed back to her hive snuggled in to her bed and buzzed ever so softly to sleep".
Creating a little friend is simple. You could use wool roving and needle felt a little creature. Right now I have a bee in my pocket (we are hoping to catch a swarm).
The verse I have been saying is,
There once was a bee..zzz.
She landed on my knee..zzz.
Then she flew up to my nose...zzz.
I could not see, she was so close .
So I asked the bee, would you like some tea? And the bee said, zzz...certainly.
So I poured the tea and we both drank it easily.
I've searched everywhere for the author of this verse, I can't seem to find who the created it. If you know, please email me so I can credit her/him. A valuable resource for pocket puppets is the book Around the World with Finger Puppet Animals by Suzanne Down. This book has sweet rhymes, tales and verses along with patterns for finger puppets that you can easily make with felt, needle and thread. This book is a must-have for parents of young children and childcare providers. If you have a a pocket story or wee friend, I'd love to hear about it in the comment section below.
Each month in the Heart of the Home course you will receive verses, songs, games and tutorials to inspire more magical moments in your family's life.
Staying connected with your little one through the day is a practice. It requires one to be present, observant and creative. When we can devote extra warmth and attention to a few key moments through the day transitions are met with more ease. Children can feel a security knowing what will happen next and that you are present.
For a few years I have been using a catchy phrase in my parent education classes, Connect before you Expect. It's a little reminder to take a moment to connect with your child (and yourself) throughout the day and especially for transitions. When we have an expectation like going from outside to inside or stepping away to make a cup of tea or getting into the car, pause and connect first.
I created a handy dandy PDF to print which offers simple ways for you and your child to deepen connection and move through the day with joy.