Art, Music, Drama and History Come Alive Through Puppets

During the outbreak, the arts was the first sector to be affected by the epidemic through the closing of museums, galleries, and cancellation of theatrical performances and concerts. The teachers in the Senior Aesthetics programme felt that students still needed expressive outlets and started devising a Grade 7 interdisciplinary project among the Art, Music, Drama and History departments

The objective was for students to show off some of the skills they had learnt in Grade 7, this included stop-motion in Art, composition in Music, narration in Drama and Foley (sound effects). The teachers also wanted to collaborate and demonstrate how their respective subjects were connected to each other.

It was great to collaborate with other subject teachers and create a project that shows students how connected different fields of Art are to each other. Creativity is something that can be learned and nurtured. While the students devised their puppet performances, they had to make many creative choices for sound, design and storytelling. Although some students took more significant risks than others, all students can walk away knowing that they have made creative choices.

Rebecca WEISZ
Senior School Drama and English Teacher

Over five weeks, students were engaged in the history of puppeteering and the different ways of manipulating an inanimate object. The students had a choice of three types of puppets, three forms of music, and three styles of story-telling to bring to life a Greek myth. This matrix allowed them to work with their strength and demonstrate the skills they have learnt throughout the year. 

Students developed their skills as storytellers, performers, designers and musicians. In puppetry, a student needs to be aware of movement learned in Drama like gesture, posture and gait which are demonstrated through three key principles of puppetry: breath, focus, and weight. They were able to showcase their final project—a puppet performance based on a Greek myth they had learnt in History class.

Making this project was one of the most enjoyable things I’d ever done and this combined all the subjects I love, which was even better. Writing, recording the narration and arranging the background music took more than five hours, but it was extremely fun to execute. Recording the actual project was great because I could finally see all my hard work coming together. I encountered problems like how to hold and control two separate puppets, and what type of Foley to use, but I overcame them in the end. 

ZHANG Jin Lin
Grade 7, Ruby

There were many outstanding works by our G7s, and here we showcase just a few great examples:

I had fun making the puppets because I like to design and draw. What I enjoyed most was the process of filming with my family because I was able to spend more time with them.

LEONG Chin Xuan
Grade 7, Pearl

I think projects that bring many subjects together is even more fun than regular projects. I really enjoyed this experience in particular because it brought many of my favourite subjects, like Art and History, together into a final product that I can appreciate and feel proud of. Projects like this also make good use of what we learnt in an interesting way. The experience of doing the project also allowed me to learn more than what was taught in lessons, like creativity and patience. 

YANG Si-Han
Grade 7, Pearl 

What I most enjoyed was the puppet manipulation and sound effects creation. While moving the puppets around and telling the story, I also enjoyed the time spent working with my mom. I think that, in the future, skills learnt in Drama classes and the ability to tell a particular story will be necessary outside of the classroom.

NYAMJAV Makhamaya
Grade 7, Amber

We hope you enjoyed watching the handcrafted puppets and sets, and the students’ creative use of recorded and edited music. 

As part of SSIS’ holistic approach to education, the Art, Drama, Music and History curriculum intentionally exposes our learners to different modes of expression and development.

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