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Monday, December 22, 2008

Review: Puppettools

What to say about this website? I could take the "Huh. Maybe it's me." approach and just say that I found little use for a website of videos encouraging me to engage my children through the use of educational puppetry. That would be accurate .... but it would also fall far short of being the full truth. And here at Books and Bairns, I have a policy of FULL TRUTH when it comes to my reviews because frankly, I think my readers are worth it. So here goes:

Puppettoools is a website that gives ideas on how to use puppets in teaching. As far as the creator is concerned, there's room in every lesson for a couple of puppets. Or four.

I have absolutely no idea who would find this particular site useful. Classroom teachers? Probably not. Unless they roped a bunch of parent helpers in to assembling puppets in addition to tying shoes, giving small-group spelling quizzes and doing crowd control in the hallways, I just don't see how the professional classroom teachers that I personally know could possibly have enough hours in the day to undertake the Puppettools premise.

Homeschoolers? Nah. The Puppettools ideas reek of the kind of canned "Sit still so I can teach you something!" thought process that makes most homeschooler run, not walk, in the opposite direction.

I won't even go into the cost benefit analysis because frankly, if you're tempted to pay someone to show you how to use puppets, I've got a hint for you: google. Best kept secret since modern plumbing, right?

So, an unequivocal thumbs down for Puppettools. Sorry.

1 comment:

~ Angi :) said...

It hasn't been three days since I read an article by a child development guru who expounded on the topic of using puppets with children. While she was not pressing the issue, she put the idea out there for application if one wanted to take the idea and run with it. Citing a preschool classroom, she told of one teacher who had a puppet for each task (snacktime, cleanup, naptime, etc). Her information was compelling.

As for the website you've supplied - I have to agree. Scrolling through without having access to information is cyber frustration at its' finest.