The working process described below was part of a Grundtvig Course organized by The Bielsko Artistic Association Grodzki Theatre in Cappadocia (Goreme and Nevşehir), Turkey in April 2014 under the title: “Theatre in Adult Education – from the practitioners` perspective”. It lasted for six days and included a public presentation of puppet scenes created by the group.

More: intro

First Module

• To build the team and create environment for effective cooperation
• To create space for self-expression and for getting to know each other
• To direct participants` attention at non-verbal storytelling
• To familiarize participants with specific ice-breaking and integration techniques

Actions: Module1

01_01m 01_02m


Second Module

• To teach participants how to make simple paper puppets and props
• To engage the group in a free creative activity
• To develop simple personal and image-based stories

Actions: Module2

02_01m 02_02m



Third Module

• To introduce participants to basic animation skills
• To familiarize the group with the roles of actors-puppeteers, directors and set designers
• To prepare participants for public presentation

Actions: Module3

02_03m 02_04m

03_01m 03_02m


Fourth Module

• To let participants use and practice skills and knowledge previously acquired in a new context
• To enable participants to confront their own theatrical vision with the audience perception
• To conclude an intensive training process with a rewarding ending

Actions: Module4

04_01m 04_02m

04_03m 04_04m



Fifth Module

• To introduce participants to some new working methods from the puppetry field
• To reflect on the whole working process and evaluate all different aspects of the common experience
• To prepare participants for further use of the methods presented during the course

Actions: Module5

05_01m 05_02m


The course was highly assessed by the participants. After going back home they had a chance to test the usefulness of skills and knowledge acquired during the course in their own professional activities. Their below quoted statements refer to the most important and useful aspects of the training.

More: Summary

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Puppetry workshop organized and led by the course participants – Marie and Jim Aherne in Galway, Ireland (May 2014).
I was a bit anxious that the workshop participants would not be interested in making puppets. But they were very keen and creative!



  1. Arnadottir

    6 June 2014

    Thank you Krzystof and Maria for posting this detailed information about the marvelous course you gave in Göreme. I encourage people to apply for this course next time you will give it. Yet I haven´t had the opportunity to use puppets in my teaching but I have used a lot of the other things we learned and for me using theater in adult education was de-dramatized during the course.

  2. Jim

    14 June 2014

    I was not sure how much I would benefit from attending the course. One of my expectations was that I would develop links with groups throughout Europe. There for I was disappointed that so few received funding to attend. Never the less the participants were very well informed and helpful.

    Never the less it was well worth attending. Marie and I learnt a lot about puppet making and performing with them. Also about EU structures and training programs from people experienced in such matters.

    The course was very well structured. It was obvious that Maria and Krzysztof but a lot of effort into the course. They faced any problems and dealt with them without causing any concern to the participants. Arranging for us to perform in the school was the highlight of our course and was most informative.

    Our accommodation in the Taskonak Hotel, Goreme, was amazing it was a large comfortable cave room the breakfast each morning was fantastic with cereal, fresh fruit, pancakes and scones. The staff was friendly and helpful.

    I felt very comfortable using the course venues as they were public spaces where I felt part of the community rather than been locked away in a hall or similar space. We did not need many materials which is great for continuing our work in ALâ workshops where finance is short. We received some very helpful printed material both from organizers and participants.

    From the start due to the team building exercise we built a good working relationship. Maria and Krzysztof, Björg Árnadóttir and Birgit Langeder are people I look forward to working with again in the near future.

    We have already introduced puppets into ALâ. Marie and I run a very successful workshop and we are planning to include puppets into our show in late November. To achieve this we will continue working with the weekly workshop participants during the next few months.

    Through participant presentations we learnt about other Developmental Drama techniques such a Bibilodrama and Psychodrama, Sociadrama and other action methods. We agreed to examine the possibility of a training project examining the combination of developmental drama methodologies in developmental education and Pedagogy such as Theatre of the Oppressed, Bibilodrama, etc and methods such as puppets, clowning etc. I hope this takes place as the course thought me that we can learn so much from each other.

  3. Armine

    21 October 2015

    Thanks a lot, Maria, for holding a wonderful workshop in two of our project beneficiary communities in the Northern part of Armenia. Here, far away from Bielsko-Biala, our community members- kids, their parents and teachers- felt encouraged and motivated and expressed their creativity to prepare paper puppets, colour them and even make small shows. I just want to tell you that the idea was so wonderful and creative that the puppets made during the workshop, as well as several new ones, are going to be used later during school events.

  4. Małgorzata

    28 October 2015

    It was amazing to witness how the very basic puppetry works its magic.
    North-west of Armenia, a tiny secluded village, deprived of various conveniences save cellular telephony and the Internet. Group of teenage school pupils with their teacher resigned from their Sunday leasure to welcome visitors. Some exotic Europeans not able to understand neither a letter, nor a spoken word in Armenian and trying to express themselves in Enlish much too fluent for the listeners or with broken Russian, that seemed to be equally foreign for all the present.
    The National Independence Day was to be celebrated and international pleasantries and mutual good will and even better intentions of possible collaboration in the future were to be exchanged on that vital occcassion.
    Out of hospitality and politeness of the hosts, the visiting puppetry artist was offered a few minutes to present the methods used in her theatrical group and in the work counteracting social exclusion.
    I will rather show you – she offered to that unpredictable audience. Barehandedly and almost speeachlessly she transformed modest 5 to 10 minutes into hour or so of joyfull eruption of creativity of all meeting participants. Teenagers got committed completely. Nothing and nobody was prepared in advance. Only some waste paper (used flipchart sheets) and pieces of string were utilised. No linquistic skills were important; no differences of age, bacground, culture and nationality mattered any more. Crude paper puppets immediately lived their full and independent lives, expressed their, or rather their creators ,uniqueness and intentions.
    That way new aspect of independence and hopes for developement conmemorated that day of national celebration.

    The next meeting expected that day was a scheduled briefieng for rural community activists in another village. But grapevine had worked perfectly well among exceptionaly sociable Armenians.
    In the community hall the representatives of all generations awaited excitedly their share of puppetry workshop. They also had a lot of fun and realised for how many applications their puppets are suitable.

    One more aspect of addressing any groups with that sort of stimulation is worth highlighting. Not a trace of patronizing occured there, which could be felt by those offered very sophisticated and costly materials and tools, not otherwise available for them. Only a gift of an opportunity to experience, how creative and mighty they are just using their imagination and hands in giving a new life to unwanted things intended for disposal.

  5. Maria-Schejbal

    29 October 2015

    Puppets are magic indeed. Just recently, I run two puppetry workshops – one in Bielsko-Biała, and one in Krakow. This time we were exploring possibilities of making and animating simple paper puppets while working with seniors. Magic, despite the age.

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