note from the author about reverence: All of these scripts were developed for
use within programs which give honor and
glory to God. At no time is the comedy meant
to be played in a way demeaning to the dignity
of Our Lord. It may strike some, who have
weathered the experimental educational antics
of the post-Vatican II era, that using comedic
puppet presentations to represent Our Lord
and the Saints verges on making a cheap
joke of them. This is not ever my intention.
I’ll give you an example: When, as in the
case of my script on St. Peter, I poke extreme
fun at the slowness with which the Apostles
grasped the real meaning of Jesus’ teaching,
I do so with the very great affection of
one who identifies solidly with that slowness,
which I struggle with myself. Their faults
are meant to put the children at ease with
acknowledging their own faults and to help
them understand just how much even the Biblical
saints needed the mercy of God. When Jesus
uses ordinary modern vernacular in relating
to other characters, notice that He does
so with great forbearance and with affection
for them all, even when He is being critical.
I never want to send the message to a child
that Jesus is slovenly or ordinary, but
merciful, accessible and forgiving, someone
they can relate to. When these scripts are
used in my religious-ed classes, they are
preceded by a decade of the Rosary (done
in the strictest reverence), a spirited,
heartfelt talk on the day’s lesson (including
dialogue with the children), the singing
of a hymn (with marching), a Bible story,
more discussion of the lesson, a re-enactment
of the Bible story (when time allows) and
then, finally, the puppet show. By the time
we get to my short, wacky puppet presentation,
my reverence for the subject has already
been absorbed. The humor is a bonus. The
puppet show is invariably used to cap a
particular concept; to frame it in a memorable
way for the children, to review difficult
vocabulary, a passage of scripture or make
a dry subject fun (like the colors of the
liturgical year, reflected in the vestments
of our priests). It has been my experience
that a simple concept, enjoyably presented,
has sticking power. The parents of my students
heartily attest to this and to the success
of the class as a whole. I have often been
told by these same parents that their children
cannot wait to come to class and that their
interest in prayer and good works is growing.
I hope your use of these scripts, either
for puppet presentations or as skits for
older children, will bring vibrancy, excitement
and joy to your classroom experience. God
bless you all! Lisa Mladinich
and Special Eduction - Special
needs children are highly responsive to
puppets! Children with Autistic Disorder,
Asperger's Syndrome and ADDS pay attention
for long periods and want to touch and try
them on after my public shows. The feedback
from parents and grandparents has been phenomenal.
They tell me, in delighted astonishment,
that they've never seen their kids stay
attentive for so long (up to 45 minutes
in my library programs), nor remain so connected,
calm and interested afterwards. Like me,
they see the potential for making learning
a lot more fun and productive for these
very special children. If you're teaching
religion to students who require Special
Education and need a great way to draw them
in, try puppets!
additional information or to share your
ideas contact Lisa Mladinich [email protected]
02/25/08 - New Script!Resurrection! features a script on John (11:25) “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he dies, he shall live...
01/08 - New Script!!That Book features a script on John 1.
12/07 - Amazing Catechists needs you! A questionnaire has been designed to develop content for a new website and on-line forum in English and Spanish (coming soon!), www.amazingcatechists.com. Amazing Catechists seeks to breathe new life into the religious formation of Catholic children, teens and adults. Amazing Catechists are sacramentally active, loyal to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church and persevering humbly, day-by-day, in their relationships with Jesus Christ. Download the questionnaire.
11/11/07 - St. Therese Puppet Show - This show was created by the seventh graders at the St. Theresa School in Arkansas - thank you students for sharing your work with children around the world!
10/22/07 - Check out our latest script, The Cross.
Catch the wave! Five new scripts about Jesus written for a VBS in Rhode Island:
- Kids Acting Out Puppet Scripts!
- I was handed an epiphany, today, when I read
an email from a fourth-grade religion teacher
from Brooklyn, NY who said he was using my puppet
scripts as skits! He said that having the children
use the scripts to act the stories out themselves
was getting the message across effectively and
helping shy kids to participate. What a great,
kinetic way to teach. I had been wondering how
to include older children in the fun and James
Lucignano has taken the concept and run with
it. Thanks, James!
10/02/06 - ¡Espectáculo de Marionetas en Español! Estamos
encantadas de darle la bienvenida a María Rivera
(refiérase a biografía
y foto en esta página) a nuestro ministerio
de marionetas gratis. Maria es una traductora
profesional y se ha comprometido a comenzar las
traducciones de los guiones de Lisa. Si usted
enseña en un lugar donde se habla español y encuentra
que los guiones en esta página le pueden ser útiles,
por favor comuníquese con Lisa a través del vínculo
electrónico que aparece abajo para pedir una traducción
gratis. Los pedidos se cumplirán de acuerdo al
orden en que se reciban, ya que María los está
traduciendo durante su tiempo libre, así que tenga
paciencia y planee con tiempo. Los nuevos guiones
en ingles y español de "Primera Confesión"
y "Primera Comunión" estarán disponibles
durante el año escolar. Los próximos: "Pecado",
"Libre albedrío" y "Gracia".
Puppet Shows in Spanish! We are overjoyed
to welcome Maria Rivera (see
bio and picture on this page) to our free
puppet ministry. Maria is a professional translator
and has agreed to begin work on Lisa’s scripts!
If you are teaching in a Spanish-language environment
and there are existing scripts on this site which
would answer your need, please contact Lisa at
the email link below to request a free translation.
Work will be done in the order in which it is
received in Maria’s spare time, so please be patient
and plan ahead! Newly written and translated First
Penance and First Communion scripts will be posted
throughout the school year. First up: “Sin, Free
Will and Grace” – coming soon!
9/28/06 - God's Gift of Forgiveness
- We've just posted a new show called Sin,
Free Will and Grace, all about the topics
of free will, sin, and forgiveness of sin.
6/11/06 - VBS
and Saints Come Marching (and Laughing) In - These 10-15-minute comedic scripts were created
on demand for a CatholicMom.com reader who needed
five “saint” scripts in a hurry for a parish VBS
FIESTA program in Mississippi. Each script references
sacred scripture, actual events in the lives of
the saints, and features a central ideal or virtue
the children will not soon forget. While appropriate
for children up to the fifth grade, the new saint
series can be adapted for much younger children
by using only the shorter scenes-within-scenes.
It is recommended
that these shows be presented in the following
I’m a former
actress living on Long Island, NY with my DH and
DD, loving suburban life after many years in the
city. I’ve spent my life writing, including several
years of writing theatrically (sketch comedy,
one-woman shows) and am currently at work on my
first novel, a Catholic inspirational/murder mystery
& romance! Click
here to read the rest of Lisa's bio.
María M. Rivera is a Spanish
Medical Interpreter who writes on diverse topics.
Besides being bilingual (Spanish <> English)
she also studies Italian and Technical Communications.
Originally from Puerto Rico, she now resides in
Wauwatosa, Wisconsin. She is an active member
of St. Florian Parish in West Milwaukee, Wisconsin
where she volunteers as a Confirmation catechist.
Click here to read the
rest of Maria's bio.
I am a Catholic Mom and also teach Language Arts to middle/junior high students at St. Theresa School in Little Rock, AR. I happened upon your Puppet Ministry last year and we began our own Puppet Series at our school. It has been a huge school-wide hit!
My husband built a stage/screen out of dry-erase wipe board material, so we can decorate the set with Bible quotes, the name of the play and other words and symbols relative to the play. The 7th grade students make their own puppets out of felt/hot glue and misc. materials. They then present the plays to grades P-K through 8th grade. The priviledge to do this has become a special "rite of passage" for the 7th graders, with the younger kids anxious for their opportunity.
I was so pleased to see you have added quite a few new plays, so that we can offer two different plays per year to each grade level. The Puppet Series also impressed other teachers and our principal. As part of our school accreditation process, we listed that we wanted to create more awareness of our patron saint, St. Theresa, so it was written into the plan that this year we would develop a puppet play based on her life. I am using your other saint palys as a guideline and working with a small group of 7th graders to develop it. We hope to have it ready by early October, to commemorate St. Theresa's Feast Day.
Thanks for your sharing your creativity with the public!