Star turns;The folding puppet theatre company;Arts;Theatre

12th February 1999 at 00:00
School: Mill O'Forest Primary, Aberdeenshire; school roll 285, classes involved P1-3; Headteacher: Louise Finch What was the best arts company to visit your school in the past year? The Folding Puppet Theatre How did you hear about it? By flyer. We often respond to those, but on this occasion the event was designed to coincide with last April's World Book Day.

How long did they spend with you? The performance lasted about 40 minutes.

What did they do? It was one man - Iain Halket - and a box about the size of a laundry hamper, out of which he produced a folding stage and half a dozen puppets. They were handmade glove puppets with interchangeable hand-painted and incredibly beautiful heads made of something like papier mache. Together, they performed a kind of fairytale called 'The Singing Ringing Tree'.

Did you do any preparation? Not for this but we did also have some authors in for the older children and we prepared them by reading the authors' books to them.

Did you do any follow-up work? The children did paintings and foundations of writing stories and drawings. Later on, they made folding jointed people.

What did the visit cost? pound;80 Who paid? The school What was so good about the performance? Iain Halket - and his puppets - communicated incredibly well with the children. He had them absolutely eating out of his hands, mesmerised and thrilled.

How relevant was it to the curriculum? Very - we had been working with the children on stories, fairy tales and nursery rhymes and he related 'The Singing Ringing Tree' to all of that.

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