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How to Make Paper Bag Puppets

How to Make Paper Bag Puppets

Welcome back to another free art lesson from Golden Road Arts. If you missed our last tutorial, we concluded the three-part series on Solarplate Printmaking With Barbara Mason – Solarplate Printmaking Inking and Printing Process Part 3.

Today we share a lesson on how to make paper bag puppets – this lesson was demonstrated during the 2022 Library on the Loose collaboration with the Hillsboro Library.

Creating Simple Paper Bag Puppets for Children Video

Find out how to construct a paper bag puppet for kids. Barbara explains how to create fun bear and owl designs using simple materials available at home.

Materials Required for Paper Bag Puppets

Scroll down to see images of the owl and bear puppet designs created for our art in the park events.

Watch the Paper Bag Puppet Design Process

Follow along with the video transcript as Barbara Mason outlines the process for creating a paper bag puppet. See for yourself why kids need art to inspire creativity and develop communication skills.

This is Barbara Mason, and today we’re going to do another fun project. But I also want to talk about our brand new Artey the Art bear coloring book. We had a coloring book last year, but this year we have a new and improved version that has even more pages in it. And so, we have some of the original designs and then we have some of the designs from the lessons online. This design right here is from a tunnel book lesson, and then we have this design here. That’s all the children doing a big chalk painting of Artey, and then a little further back we’ve got a Freida Kahlo design, so there’s lots of new designs in our coloring book, if you want to get a coloring book. Hopefully you’ll join us in the library this summer. We’re partnering with the Hillsboro Public Library’s Library on the Loose program. And we’re going to be at 16 different parks. So, if you look on our website or on the library’s website or even on our Facebook page, you’ll be able to find out where Golden Road Arts is going to be.

This project that we’re going to do is a Paper Bag Puppet and so when you put your hand in the puppet like this and you open the front of the puppet right away, you’ve got a puppet that can talk to you. And these are very, very easy to do. And the best thing about them is they have googly eyes. These googly eyes are very, very popular with kids. Everybody likes googly eyes. So, what we have done here is we have actually made a couple of templates, one for the bear and one for the owl. And hopefully we’re going to do some more of these, and we’ll put them all on our website. So, all you have to do is cut these out of colored paper and you’ll be able to use any colors you want and make a bear and also an owl.

I already have these cut out here and this is just construction paper. So, first of all, we’re going to do our ears. So, we have our all-purpose glue. I like this glue because it’s so easy to use and you don’t spill it. It’s pretty hard to spill it. So, we’re going to put our ears on and then we have a centerpiece of our ear that’s pink, for the inside of the ear. We put our other ear on the other side. This is pretty easy. I think you could be pretty young and still do this successfully, but even older kids like doing this. I mean, puppets are something that people like at every age, even when you’re grown up. You like puppets. It gives you an opportunity to be somebody you are not. You put your hand in there and you start talking for the puppet.

So, the mouth we’re going to do this way, so that this part of the mouth comes over the part where the bag opens like this so. You want to be able to make it look like his mouth actually opens when the when you lift up the inside of the bag. And then, we have a little heart here for his nose. And then the bottom part of his mouth is right here. This would be like your chin. So, we got a little bear chin we’re going to stick on right here. I’m going to make sure it goes underneath here, so it opens right there.

And we’ve got his hands. Everybody needs little paws. This is a cute little bear puppet. You can see that I’ve already got one done here. So, you could make these out of any colors you want. You know, we chose colors that looked an awful lot like a bear and an owl, but you could actually do any colors you want. Now, when you put the eyes on, these are googly eyes and they’re heavy. They’re a lot heavier than paper and so the best way to glue them is to use stronger glue. And so, this glue we’re going to use is called tacky glue. It’s sort of like Elmers Glue, except it’s just a little thicker. That’s the reason they call it tacky. I think it’s tacky because it’s so thick that it sticks right away. You don’t have to wait for it to stick. So there, we have our little paper bag puppet. You could make bears out of all different colors, and you could have a teddy bear picnic of your very own. Does everybody know that Teddy Bear Picnic song? I’m not going to sing it for you. I’m not a great singer, but it’s a fun song. And there’s actually a book about it.

So, this time, we’re going to do the owl. And so, what we have here is we have two ears, two eyes, two wings and two eyes sockets, and a very pretty orange nose. So, the first thing we’re going to do is put in our wings. And you know, you could make these out of any colors you want. They don’t have to be brown. We chose brown because it looks most like an owl. And the things that we’re doing are made to be going with the books, the story books and there’s an owl in the storybook, and so we wanted it to look like the book. I hope that you’ll join us in the park. We hope that when you come, that you will be able to make one of these puppets and that you will also read the book and enjoy the story.

So now we’re going to put on our ears. I thought the ears should go straight up, but other people thought no, they should go to the side. So, I guess you could make the ears go anyway you want. We actually looked at pictures of real owls and we saw that some of them did go straight up and some of them actually went to the side, so it just depends. Look at those great big eye sockets. They also have very big eyes. And they have little beaks. So, here’s our little owl beak. This looks like it needs a little more glue here. OK, now we’re going to put on our googly eyes. I think googly eyes are so much fun. I mean, if you were an owl, wouldn’t you want to have eyes? I guess they already do have eyes that turn around. But having these googly eyes is so fun. And you can kind of turn your owl so that his eyes go the same direction, one’s going left and one’s going right. That looked pretty funny, but you get them going both the same way and then be sure to put the lid on your glue.

So now I’m going to let that dry, so I’m not going to pick that one up, but you can actually put your hand in your owl, and you can make him talk. I don’t know what owls say, but I think mostly it’s WHO. WHO? This is also our bear puppet. I think the bear and the owl are probably friends in our book. I’m not sure, but I think they are. So, here’s our little play owl and bear. So, we hope that you’ll join us in the park and that you’ll hear the story. Our theme this year is about the outdoors, and we couldn’t get more outdoorsy than owls and bears.

My name is Barbara Mason. And thank you for joining me at Golden Road Arts. And we’ll see you next time.

Free Art Lessons for Children With Golden Road Arts

Golden Road Arts creates free art lessons for kids, along with in-person live events in the Hillsboro area. Our lessons assist in a child’s artistic development, and are available for use at home or in the classroom. To get started, watch our free art lessons now.

If you would like to support us to help create more art lessons and live events, you can make a donation or buy art from our online art gallery.

Free art lesson on paper bag puppet construction.

Paper bag puppet owl with googly eyes art.

Paper bag puppet bear art tutorial.

Bear puppet design made from a paper bag.

Free puppet art lesson from Barbara Mason.

Barbara Mason creates paper bag puppets for kids.


Paper bag puppets materials and construction.

Artey the Art Bear holding a news for you sign about online art lessons news
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