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The Power of Puppets in Setting the Stage for Critical Discourse Across Content Areas

Mon, April 20, 4:05 to 5:35pm, Virtual Room


This study examines the power of puppets to facilitate critical discourse in elementary teacher preparation courses. The puppets, used by the authors in mathematics, science, and literacy methods courses, provided a springboard for discussions related to content, equity, and practice. Employing Third Space (GutiƩrrez, 2008), we analyzed teaching video and student interviews to explore how and when the puppets provided transformational learning opportunities. Findings suggest that, across the three courses, the authors used the puppets to engage teacher candidates in questioning, interrogating text, sense-making, and reflecting to challenge existing notions related to content, equity, and practice. As we modeled the use of puppets for PreK-5 classrooms, we found that they became a part of our college classroom community.