The Small Screen

the small screen

It’s a mini puppet theater with a retro twist! With just a few supplies, you can create a B-movie extraordinaire…and did you notice the television screen illuminates?

You’ll need:

  • 1 cupcake box
  • A couple wooden coffee stirrers
  • White card stock
  • 1 sparkle stem
  • 1 light source (more in this below!)
  • Scissors and tape for construction
  • A pen for drawing your characters

This project works best when you use a cupcake box with a plastic window. I purchased my 4.5″ x 4.5″ x 3″ cupcake boxes from Oriental Trading Company (item #3/3581). A dozen boxes cost $5.

side view of television theaterThe mini theater is basically the cupcake box with the lid raised. Simple, right? I cut the tab off the lid and added a sparkle stem antennae, but I left the sides of the lid intact because it makes the screen more stable. I also added a rectangle of black construction paper to make the television appear to be resting on something, but that’s optional.

To make your puppets, draw your characters on white card stock, then tape them to the bottom of wooden coffee stirrers. Store your puppets in the box when not in use!

mini puppets on sticksThe real fun is when you turn down the lights and illuminate your screen by dropping a submersible LED light in the box! You can find these lights in the floral section of Michaels Craft store:

submersible ledHowever, at $20 for 12, they can get pricey. So bring one of Michaels’ standard-issue 40% off coupons, or go with a cheaper alternative, like a glow stick. Here, for example, is a green glow stick in action…

green screenDefinitely gives new meaning to the phrase “green screen special effects.”