School of Fine ArtsBallard Institute and Museum of Puppetry
About Us

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The University of Connecticut (UConn) is a public research university in the U.S. state of Connecticut. UConn was founded in 1881 and is a Land Grant and Sea Grant college & member of the Space Grant Consortium. The university serves more than 30,000 students on its six campuses, including more than 8,000 graduate students in multiple programs.

Rod Puppet Workshops

Rod Puppet Workshop with Abby Bosley

Make a simple rod puppet with materials you have lying around your home! Recommended for ages 6+.

Materials needed: newspaper; tape; a toilet paper roll or paper cup: markers; string, yarn, or ribbon; 3 chopsticks, skewers, straws, or pencils (for your rods); scissors; hole punch; colored paper, fabric, pipe cleaners, cardboard, beads, or anything else to decorate!; optional: hot glue

Originally streamed on Facebook on 4/15/20.

Make a Puppet of Your Pet! with Elise Vanase

Do you love your pets as much as we do? Come make a rod puppet of one of them with us tomorrow!

Materials needed: newspaper, masking tape, paint, yarn or string, 3 one-foot-long sticks (chopsticks, skewers, unused pencils, or even straws will all work!)

Recommended for ages 7+

Originally streamed on Facebook 6/12/2020.

Make a Milk Jug Head with Elise Vanase

Learn how to make a large puppet head out of an empty milk jug! Recommended for ages 5+. Materials needed: empty milk jug (any size), paint or permanent markers, plastic bags/old t-shirt (for hair)

Originally streamed live on Facebook on 6/4/2020.

Picasso-Inspired Abstract Masks with Elise Vanasse

Embrace the world of abstract in puppetry! Inspired by the iconic painted faces of Picasso, we will create funky handheld masks out of geometrical shapes. Anything goes in creating these—you can’t mess it up! Recommended for ages 7+. Materials needed: cereal box/thin cardboard; paint; paint brushes; hot glue (best) or glue sticks; scissors Originally streamed on Facebook on 5/15/20.

Make Egg Carton Heads with Elise Vanase

Hold on to your empty cardboard egg cartons because they can be cut up and rearranged into funky puppet heads! Recommended for ages 5+. Materials needed: egg carton, scissors, glue, paint (optional), popsicle stick or rod Originally streamed on Facebook on 6/5/20.

Jellyfish Puppet Workshop with Elise Vanasse

Make an ethereal jellyfish with life-like movements out of just a paper bowl and a plastic bag! Recommended for ages 5+. Materials needed: paper bowl, scissors, plastic bags, paint or markers, yarn, tape or hot glue Originally streamed on Facebook on 6/10/20.