Play Theater: DIY

I've been pondering quite a bit lately my responsibilities as a foster parent.
Because the children in my home are not my own, 
I sometimes let myself be anything but the perfect parent.
I put the kiddos in front of the television far more
 than I should like to think I would ever do with my own little pumpkins. 
I'm not proud of this, and I believe more than anything
that I'm fooling myself if I think 
one day I will wake up to my perfect dream life
and hence become the person I truly wish to be. 
If I'm going to be the type of parent that turns the tv off 
and instead tunes into what's going on in "my" kids lives
I've got to start now - before this rut gets too deep.

So for the last few weeks I've started to try doing at least one special thing 
with our kiddo's each day. 
We've been going to story time at the library, 
drawing in our sketchbooks together at the kitchen table, 
and this week I embarked on a little project of my own.

It started out as a puppet theater but I soon discovered my design 
had much more to offer. 

Beside a puppet theater, you can turn it around and enjoy your own 
personal show.

Or upside down

where little one's can hide and play inside

or up on a table 
you can give a show with plenty of room for props.
Actually the more I think about it, this is the perfect little theater for finger puppets,
or perhaps hang some paper and play with shadow puppets.

But I think the traditional hand puppets are my favorite,
but as you can see if I can think of all these other uses
a child'd imagination can surely find even more!
And so I think it's more appropriate to call my project
a play theater. 

If you think your kiddos 
would also like a play theater of their own
I've put together some step by step instructors 

What you will need:
3 square moving boxes
one twin sheet
glue gun, and lots of glue sticks
 kitchen scissors 
Trims (optional)

At this point your theater is pretty sturdy with 2 layers of cardboard

but once you start covering up the inside you will add a 3rd,
which is pretty dang important when you have little ones.
You could certainly get really fancy with your inside covers -
on the panels you could add batting and tufted buttons,
and your curtain swag could be much more elaborate if you chose. 

I kept mine rather simple, but added a bit of ruffly trim here and there to finish up some 
unpleasant looking seems
and then adorned the outside corners and center of the swag 
by making fabric flowers out of my remaining sheet fabric. 

So I guess my next project should be making puppets -
how I wish I had a working sewing machine. Sigh!


Martha said...

If I were a foster child, I would definitely want to be placed with your family!

This is such a great project, love your directions, and the finished piece turned out so cute. Thank you Chelsea Ann!

Lysa said...

It is so easy to let kids watch TV (or in my case, play video games.) I think it's great what you are doing, and just think of all the happy memories you're creating!

Corey Moortgat said...

This little theatre is just wonderful!! I love all the different arrangements! I may have to put this on my to-do list!

I agree with Martha, I think your foster kids are lucky to have been placed with you!