Chinese Paper Dragons

Dragon Puppet (8)

Chinese New Years won’t technically fall until February 12, 2021, but these dragon puppets still felt fun to make as we made the transition to 2021 as festive as possible!

To make each dragon, I first cut sheets of construction paper in half vertically, then glued them together into one extra long strip. You’ll need two pieces like this for each dragon; Travis chose black and blue and Veronika chose black and purple.

Dragon Puppet (1)

I wouldn’t normally recommend using hot glue on paper, but in this case it was the most secure way to glue one strip to the other, perpendicular to each other. Fold up accordion-style.

Dragon Puppet (2)

We then cut extra sheets of construction paper to be the heads and tails (rounding the heads slightly and cutting the tails into a triangle point). Use hot glue to add to either end of the body.

Dragon Puppet (5)

Just a few final touches were needed now! Veronika helped glue feathers and bright buttons onto each face, and we added additional features with marker.

Dragon Puppet (7)

Our dragons were ready to rock and roar.

Dragon Puppet (9)

We’re looking forward to the upcoming Year of the Ox!

Chinese Dragon alt

Butterfly Hand Puppet

Butterfly Puppets (3)

We’ve been having fun with puppets lately, and here’s a neat one that kids can wear right on their hands!

I had a few fabric swatches in different prints, so cut out circles for a blue butterfly and a rather whimsical pineapple one. Insert this circle of fabric into a clothespin. Ideally I would have used a peg clothespin, but a spring-type clothespin worked in a pinch (with a little hot glue for security).

Butterfly Puppets (1)

I then wrapped a pipe cleaner around the tip of each clothespin as the antennae.

Butterfly Puppets (2)

Now to get it onto the kids’ hands! Using some old exfoliating gloves from the drugstore, I hot glued one “butterfly” onto each glove.

Veronika loved fluttering hers around!

Butterfly Puppets (6)

Travis’s very quickly became a flying dragon involved in make-believe games rather than a butterfly, but that worked just as well! Either way, these puppets were simple but fun to make.

Butterfly Puppets (5)

Snake Straw Puppet

Snake Puppet (5)

Puppet play is always fun, and this one holds particular appeal since kids can easily grasp the straws to wiggle and manoeuver their reptile friend. Honestly, the craft felt a little simple and plain after some of the complicated things we’ve been up to lately, but it’s a cinch to make, and fun to play with, so a win-win!

To make the snake, cut a long rectangle from green paper – poster board or cardstock work better than a flimsier material like construction paper, which could tear easily. Adults, trim one end of the paper into a triangle as the snake’s tail, and make the other end rounded for its head.

Snake Puppet (1)

Show your child how to make accordion pleats along the length of the paper. Travis had a bit of a hard time with this, but I gave him a separate piece of paper to practice on while I folded up our snake.

Snake Puppet (2)

On the contrary though, Travis completely took over when it came to the face, deciding where the glue should go for two googly eyes and a piece of string cut for the tongue. Not bad!

Snake Puppet (3)

Once the glue dries, attach your snake to two straws with masking tape, and slither him around.

Snake Puppet (6)

Travis decided it looked more like a crocodile, since the straws almost look like legs. Crocodile or snake, have fun puppet playing!

Snake Puppet alt