CETT Puppets


What greater privilege can there be that helping to teach the teachers?

On Wednesday I teamed up with Jim “Art Games” Morris for our final engagement with this year’s cohort of trainees from Central England Teacher Training. Their course started back in early September with A City Adventure and we met up again in November to put some creative thinking in around their placements in school.

Their course is unusual for the emphasis it places on creative teaching and the arts, which is why were were called in along side a number of other arts organisations around Birmingham. Yesterday I took Jim in because I thought the students would be inspired not just by the puppets he makes but by the way he works with the pupils to make them.

We started with a Year 2 class at Victoria Park Academy and Jim making bird puppets with them and the trainees watching. For the second lesson Jim taught the trainees made their own ‘cylinder head’ puppets. After this we discussed his approach, the strategies behind it and how it works. After lunch we worked with the trainees as they used both sets of puppets to create brief puppet shows. These shows took the same stating points as we used earlier in the year with Tiverton Academy, where we will be creating a much bigger puppet show in the summer. Our emphasis here was on how the puppets allow students to talk about sophisticated issues around emigration and immigration.

It was great fun working with the trainees and seeing their puppet shows develop. To be honest it was also lovely to be giving a bit of directorial advice again. It feels so long since we were in a rehearsal room. All that changes next week!

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