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Offering scissors in your reading corner may seem strange. However, with proper supervision, they can represent interesting tools to attract children to books and encourage them to pay attention during story time. Here's how.
In preparation for this activity, collect several store flyers, Christmas catalogues, or toy store catalogues as well as empty toy packages containing pictures of children's favorite characters, particularly the ones found in many of their favorite storybooks. With your group, cut out the characters and glue them on heavy cardboard. Once this is done, stick a Popsicle stick behind each character to create puppets.
This can be a long-term project. Slowly, over the course of several weeks or months, add to your paper puppet inventory. Store them in a special box that shall remain in your reading corner. You could, for example, wrap your box with wrapping paper containing pictures of the corresponding characters. Once you feel you have enough puppets, bring them to life one by one.
Select the story you wish to read to your group and invite children to identify the main characters. To help them, briefly flip through the pages together. Encourage them to look at the cover page and predict which characters will be part of the story. Once this step is done, let them take the corresponding puppets out of your box (you may have several puppets representing each of the characters) and set them next to you.
Tell children they will be given the opportunity to reproduce the story using the puppets once you have read it to them. Encourage them to listen closely to the details of the story.
When you are done reading, distribute the puppets among the children of your group and invite them to recreate the story in small groups, representing various elements of the story as they see fit. This activity will help children understand certain key elements and messages as well as identify the emotions and conflicts present in the book.
Listen closely to children's scenarios. Question them to further their exploration of the different themes. You may also encourage them to invent a different ending to the story and invite each group to present their reproduction in front of your group.
There you have it. That is how scissors can lead to an interesting animated story time activity.
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