KIDS CORNER With Carol Peters CAROL PETERS is an award-winning art instructor who is highly skilled at bringing innovative, creative art alive for both young and old. SOCK PUPPETS FOR TODDLERS Ideas To Encourage Social Development Use your puppet to ask for help. Your puppet “I can’t find my water bottle, can you help me?” When your child helps your puppet, your puppet praises his helpfulness. Find out your child’s interest. Your puppet asks: ”What do you like to play with or do?” If your child doesn’t answer, give examples such as play on the swing, read books,etc. Then have your child ask your puppet what it likes to do. This is teaching your child to show interest in others. The possibilities are endless and fun to create. With puppets you can act out stories, make up fantasies, and find solutions to pretend situations or problems. You will also enter into your child’s thoughts, feelings and imagination. It is magical! Ideas For Conversational Development Your child may not respond verbally to the other puppet at first, but model the words for your child and give them situations to respond to— non-verbally as well. Your puppet can ask: ”Would you like to share your toy with my puppet?” When your child hands your puppet the toy, connect an emotion with the action..”I am so happy when you share! Thank YOU!” Praise them for the puppet’s good behavior! Ask the child to name their puppet and suggest names if they do not come up with one easily. After the child names their Puppet, help model a friendly social greet- ing. For example, the parent’s puppet says: “Hi, I am Buddy the Puppet what is your Name?” When the child’s puppet answers, thank your child for being so friendly and continue the conversation. Always Give Positive Reinforcement for Good Behavior! Use Your Imagination and Have Fun! 62 GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN february/march 2019 gmhtoday.com Toddlers can make adorable Sock Puppets with very little help from their parents. The answer is using peel and stick supplies! This is not only a fabulous ART PROJECT, but Puppet Play helps Preschool Children learn to develop social and friendship skills, such as sharing, helping others, listen- ing, cooperation and problem solving. It is also wonderful for developing their conversational skills!