Mrs. McGravy’s grade 1 class at Barriere Elementary recently participated in a puppet project in partnership with Barriere and Area Literacy Outreach to celebrate Literacy Week. The students made the puppets themselves and then put on a puppet show based on the book called, Mr. Gotta Go, which is about a cat who comes in out of the rain and starts to live at a hotel in Vancouver. The cat is called Mr. Gotta Go because the hotel manager keeps telling the cat he’s “gotta go when the rain stops”, and of course, it rains quite a bit in Vancouver. The book chronicles different situations from the kitchen staff who feed the cat, a lady who brings a dog in under her coat, a photo shoot in which the cat is featured, and a raccoon that invades a third floor room resulting in a trip to the vet.
With funding from Barriere and Area Literacy Outreach (BALO), and much help from Mrs. McGravy, and BALO volunteer, Dawn McCormick, the production became a reality. Some of the kids made puppets of Mr. Gotta Go, some made the hotel manager, some made the lady with the dog, the chef, the vet, and the raccoon to chronicle the story.
A cardboard refrigerator box became the puppet stage, complete with different windows cut out for viewing. Each group decorated their own window to go with their scene. On the last day, the student narrators read parts of the book while the other students acted out their scene. The kids had great fun with the project, and also learned to be a good audience by sitting quietly in their chairs when it wasn’t their scene, listening politely and clapping when the scene was done.