Increase Comprehension with Pantomime

Arts Integration Strategy for Reading Comprehension

Drama-based experiences such as pantomime are a powerful strategy for increasing reading comprehension. In my previous post, I shared a recent study stating that students who get to “act out” text demonstrate dramatic increases in comprehension.

One way to harness the power of “acting out” a story is through pantomime. As you likely know, pantomime is a silent form of drama where the actor uses movement and facial expression to communicate information. No lines or sound effects are allowed. The quiet nature of pantomime is an appealing starting point for classroom teachers who are sometimes worried about maintaining classroom management during drama-based lessons.

Here are three tips for introducing pantomime to your students. [Read more…]

Increasing Comprehension: Bridging the Physical and Mental Domains

Increasing Reading Comprehension I read a fascinating blog post today by Annie Murphy Paul (of the Brilliant Blog) about the power of making stories come alive to strengthen reading comprehension.

It was one of those articles that is SO affirming because it puts data behind an already-held philosophical belief. A quote from Paul’s post: [Read more…]

How to Get Puppets for Your Classroom

How to get puppets for your classroom

So now that we’ve spent some time on puppet skills, you are ready to use them in your teaching. If you don’t already have some puppets for your classroom, where can you get them?

Here are my three best sources for pre-made puppets:

1- Yard Sales, Thrift Stores, and Kid Consignment Sales/ Stores:

Most people are drawn to puppets but, sadly,  just don’t know what to do with them. As a result, you can often find puppets for super-discounted prices at sales and discount shops. Start keeping your eye out for them, and if you have a friend or relative who likes to “yard sale” for fun, tell him/her to pick up puppets when they are available. You’ll build up a collection in no time!

2- Let your school families know that you collect puppets and appreciate receiving them as donations or gifts.

It’s almost time for my annual teacher gift list post (see last year’s suggested gift list here.) Often families are happy to donate the puppets collecting dust on their shelves or cluttering the playroom floor. They also love having a good suggestion for an inexpensive class gift for occasions such as Christmas and Teacher Appreciation Week. Make it known that you love puppets!

3- Shop Smart!

As you know, puppets are widely available in stores. I see them in toy shops, bookstores, and often even discount retailers like TJ Maxx. However, sometimes you might be looking for a particular character or you want to purchase a set. Here are a few of my favorite online shopping spots:

[Read more…]

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