Crafting with Jessica: Puppet Monster
In Christopher Sat Straight Up in Bed, a young boy with an active imagination hears noises at night — HONK-SHOO! HONK-SHOO! — and his thoughts run wild. Could it be an elephant trumpeting outside his window? A monster under his bed? A dinosaur stomping down the street?
Help young readers get into the spirit of this fun bedtime read aloud with an adorable puppet monster.
- Finger puppet template
- A sheet of felt cloth
- A darning needle
- Glue (white school glue or fabric glue)
- Decorations (I used foam shapes, glitter glue, and markers.)
Step 1: Print and cut out the finger puppet template. Lay it on top of a piece of felt and trace around the shape. (Note: you may also freehand cut a shape similar to the one provided on the template, to add variety to your puppet monsters.)
Step 2: Fold the felt in half along the long edge of the shape. Then cut out the shape you traced onto the felt, making sure to cut through both layers of felt. This will ensure that both sides of the puppet will be the same size and shape.
Step 3: Hold the edges of the folded felt together and, starting at the bottom left corner, push the darning needle (threaded with string) through both layers of felt. When the string is almost completely through, take the needle and feed it back through the loop; then pull the string tight.
Bring the needle back around and feed it back through the side you started on. This should create a loop of string you can see along the edge of your fabric. Repeat this blanket stitch at 1/2 to 1 inch intervals until you reach the bottom right corner. Once you get all the way around the fabric to the bottom right corner, push the needle through the fabric but leave a loop. Then feed the needle back though the loop and pull the sting tight. Repeat until you feel the knot is secure. To make extra sure that your knot does not come undone you can add a dot of glue to the knot to help secure it.
(If you choose to add glue to your knots, wait until it has dried to move to the next step)
Step 4: Take the fabric you have sewn together and push the top of the fabric though the bottom hole, as if you were turning a sock inside out. This will make the edge of your puppet look a lot neater.
Step 5: Choose your decorations and glue them to the puppet’s body to create the monster you think could be making the HONK-SHOO! noise Christopher hears in the book. I used foam shapes, glitter glue, and markers, but you can use whatever you like. The options are nearly endless.
Step 6: Allow the puppet to dry completely, then have fun playing with your new little puppet monster! For extra fun, make several puppet monsters and use them to put on a puppet show retelling Christopher’s story.