I’ve created a large collection of fun little free printable finger puppets you can download and print today! Check back often for new designs.
Finger puppets are such a great learning through play activity for children of all ages. Not only will the paper puppets keep them busy for a while and inspire creative, imaginative play – but they also provide physical benefits like fine motor skill development too!
What are the benefits of playing with finger puppets?
Puppets can help stimulate creative imaginations
Getting off digital devices and getting back to using “make believe” during play time can be a difficult task nowadays. Finger puppets can be an opportunity for kids to use their imaginations and immerse themselves in worlds created on their own through role play.
As a child plays with puppets, they will begin to make up their own stories and characters – each with their own set of personalities and actions. They will likely naturally experience a range of emotions like happiness, anger, sadness, excitement and more.
This process actually helps develop emotional expression and develops language and storytelling skills.
Finger puppet play helps develop fine motor skills
Beginning with cutting out and then assembling each finger puppet, young children get a chance to work on fine motor skills like using scissors, matching edges and taping or gluing things to together.
Once the puppets are put together, the act of moving each finger independently of each other works on hand-eye coordination and dexterity.
Everything about typical finger puppet play like opening and closing the hand, moving fingers and wrist, twisting and turning, all help to build the muscles that will be needed for handwriting later.
This is why playing with finger puppets for toddlers is such a popular activity!
Finger puppet play can help build confidence
Some children are reluctant readers. Puppets can help encourage an interest in reading by being that interactive bridge that can help bring a story to life.
Parents can begin by telling a story with the puppets on their hands and then offering kids the chance to read or act out the next page.
Puppets have also been known to help encourage quiet or introverted children to express feelings or join in on conversations they normally would avoid.
Finger puppets are non-threatening and can easily be trusted by children who are shy or might find it difficult to talk to adults.
How to make finger puppets for kids
Not crafty? Is Pinterest just a world of pipe dreams and failed projects?
Don’t worry. I’ve taken all the work out of how to make finger puppets for kids. You don’t need to figure out how to make a paper puppet, all you have to do is download and print my pre-made paper finger puppet templates.
The hardest part will be deciding which children’s finger puppets to print first!
Do you have more free printable activities for kids?
New Blog Featuring Only DIY, Crafts and Printables
HOoray! We have a new sister site dedicated to fun DIY crafts and printables for children and adults. Check us out for activities like sewing tutorials, home DIY projects, paper crafts, educational printables, easy holiday crafts for kids and so much more at Crafts and Printables.
Free Printable Finger Puppets for Kids
I absolutely adore creating these fun free printable activities, so be sure to bookmark or pin this page because I will add to this list of downloads weekly.
If you have a special request for the next set of characters for finger puppets, please do leave me a comment. I'm happy to try and accommodate!
Arabian Nights Paper Finger Puppets
Kids love the Disney movie Aladdin, but did you know the story has actually been told for thousands of years? The original Arabian Nights stories that Disney’s Aladdin is loosely based off have been told in Asia, Persia, Arabia and India for years and years.
Why not use our Arabian Nights Finger Puppets to retell some of the classic stories to perhaps spur an interest in these other cultures too.
Community Helpers Finger Puppets
Who are community helpers? Community helpers are the people living and working in our communities who do many different things to help us each day.
Some examples of community helpers featured in our first Community Helpers Finger Puppets set called “Girl Power” are a mail carrier, automobile mechanic, grocery store employee, crosswalk volunteer and construction worker.
While using these finger puppets, try to think of all the people in your community who you have seen doing these jobs and talk about these different jobs with your children. Ask your children different questions about each job and how they affect our daily lives.
Jack and the Beanstalk Finger Puppets
Jack and the Beanstalk is a classic fairytale with origins in England. It has a variety of teaching and talking points if your child is old enough – good vs evil, stealing, taking risks and seizing opportunities.
Fun fact: The giant’s catchphrase “Fee-fi-fo-fum! I smell the blood of an Englishman” was used by Shakespeare in King Lear.
Little Red Riding Hood Finger Puppets
Our Little Red Riding Hood finger puppets are perfect for acting out this popular fairy tale. Finger puppet characters include:
- Little Red Riding Hood
- Big Bad Wolf
- Wolf in Grandmother’s clothing
Solar System Finger Puppets
Deluxe set of 11 finger puppets feature the planets in our solar system – Sun, Moon, Earth, Mars, Venus, Mercury, Pluto, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and Jupiter. Use our solar system finger puppets as a way way to learn about the planets in our solar system.
Jonah and the Whale Finger Puppets
Our Jonah and the Whale finger puppet set is great for retelling the classic Bible Story. In Judaism, the story of Jonah teaches teshuva, which is the act of being able to repent and be forgiven by God. Perfect for home school, Sunday School or just story time.
Print the paper puppets of Jonah, his boat, the whale and Jonah in the whale and use the two included background sheets for scenery. One sheet is of Nineveh and the other is of the ocean and beach.