In this PINKALICIOUS & PETERRIFIC™ lesson plan, children watch a video excerpt from the show. They then use their imagination and storytelling skills—two essential elements of dramatic play and an important part of children’s development—to role play different animals, and develop a story narrative in conjunction with a partner. Using paper bag puppets that they have made, students reenact their stories as they share with the class. See Get Smart with the Arts! for more information about how drama and the arts can enhance children's cognitive, physical, social, emotional, and academic skills.
Two class periods
- Students will use their knowledge and imagination to pretend to be an animal.
- Students will develop an original story about animals.
- Students will create puppets using everyday materials.
- Students will reenact their story using the puppets they've created.
Prep for Teachers
Children learn through play. Spending time playing helps children learn and develop cognitive, social, emotional, and literacy skills. It also helps children stay physically healthy and reduce stress. There are many different kinds of play; each type provides different kinds of benefits. Whether play is structured or unstructured, indoors or outdoors, done solo or in a group, play is a key component in children’s growth.
As children engage in creative play and tell stories about themselves—using dramatic play and role playing—children explore and understand people, emotions, and events. Whether they are recounting the ordinary events of the day or telling stories about fantastical creatures and places, children relish the opportunity to exercise their imagination and express themselves. Sharing or acting out stories with others enhances such social and emotional skills as self-control, decision-making, and flexibility. Constructing a story in sequence, especially if the story includes characters, setting, and plot, enables children to develop and practice language and literacy skills. Reenacting favorite tales can give children a chance to reflect, reimagine, and reshape their world as they explore their place within it.
- Paper lunch bags
- Construction paper cut into shapes
- Yarn, glitter, and other decorating supplies
- Pens, pencils, crayons, markers
- Tape or glue
- Lined paper or index cards
- Talk about what “pretend” and “make-believe” mean. How can you use your imagination to make up stories, characters, settings, and plots? (You may want to briefly introduce simple definitions for these terms.) How can you use your body and voice to create characters (human or otherwise!)?
- Ask children about what they like to do when play “pretend” or “make-believe.” What kinds of characters do they like to become? Do they use any props or costumes at home or in the classroom when they play? Do they play pretend games with siblings, friends, or relatives?
1. Before watching the video excerpt
- Tell children that they are going to watch a video, Pretend Puppy Play | PINKALICIOUS & PETERRIFIC™. Explain that Pinkalicious is a girl who loves to use her imagination to do all kinds of art activities, including imaginary play. Her younger brother, Peterrific, loves to join in with his own fun ideas. In this episode, Pinkalicious and her brother are looking after a neighbor’s puppy named Pinky. Pinky is hiding under the couch because she is scared of her new surroundings.
2. While watching the video excerpt
- Ask children to notice what Pinkalicious and Peterrific do to help Pinky. How does Pinky react?
3. After watching the video excerpt
- Talk about the video excerpt. Check for understanding by asking students to describe what happened. Correct any misunderstandings.
- What were some of the ways that Pinkalicious and Peterrific pretended to be dogs?
4. Playing Puppies: Activity
- Watch the video excerpt again. Pause to show children what Pinkalicious and Peterrific do to pretend to be puppies. How do puppies express their feelings with their body movements and vocal cues? How does that compare with the way we express our feelings? Afterwards, invite children to be puppies. Have them move through the classroom and meet the other puppies.
- Ask children to name some other animals that they can pretend to be. Have all the students pretend to be that animal. Prompt students to think about how they can move or change their bodies and voices to become the animal. Is it big or small? Does it crawl or leap? Does it make a loud roar or a little squeak?
- Have each child choose an animal to become (encourage a variety of choices). Give them a few moments to practice being that animal.
5. Animal Antics: Activity
- Pair students up to interact with each other as animals. Will the animals be friendly with one another? What activity will they do together—go on a walk, climb a mountain, play with a ball, or have lunch?
- Let children have fun with their animal partners.
6. What’s Your Story?
- Have students pause in their play. Circulate among the pairs and ask them to write or dictate a few sentences about what they did as animal friends.
- Help students write their story on an index card or lined paper.
- Send home the essay Get Smart with the Arts! so that families can support what children are learning. If you have a class website or newsletter, you may want to share with families what you've been doing and talking about in class. Encourage them to continue the conversation at home.
- Send home the paper bag puppets that children have made. Encourage students to share them with their families and create a new story together.
- Distribute supplies to make paper bag puppets. Have students make their animal as a puppet. (You may need to help students add a distinguishing characteristic, such as cat whiskers, tiger stripes, or a long elephant nose.) Be sure that children write their names and the name of their animal on the bag.
- Invite the pairs to share their stories, using their paper bag puppets to act it out.
- Congratulate students on using their imagination—and having fun together!