Aglika graduated from the Department for Puppet Art in the Bulgarian National Academy for Theatre and Film Arts. Since her graduation she has brought puppetry to children and educators all over the world. Her specialization in Puppet Therapy and training in Psychodrama opened the magic door to approach people with special needs, and inspired her to find the creative nature of every human being. In Bulgaria she adapted and facilitated a National Educational Program for children with hearing impairments. She was invited to come to Canada to work for children with Autism and ADHD. Later she became an Early Childhood Educator where she now works, leading a Strong Start Centre in the francophone school district. She has worldwide experience offering puppet workshops, presenting performances, and providing professional training to educators and support workers to use puppets in education. Over the years she has offered many workshops in schools and in communities in BC and Quebec.
My grade two and three French Immersion classes loved working with Madame Aglika. The students were encouraged to sift through the layers of magnificent, enticing materials and decorations that emerged from her travelling purple suitcase. Once their puppet was made, they spontaneously fell to playing, in French, their expressive vocabulary stretching to keep up with their imaginations. It was a pleasure to step back from my 'active' teaching position, to observe this talented educator at work and to see my students through a new lens while they designed, built and crafted their puppet-identity. I highly recommend educators of all ages and ability groups explore these puppetry workshops with your students. Danica Jovanovic, EFI Teacher, Ecole Lord Tweedsmuir School, SD #40 New Westminster, BC
Our goal was to give the students opportunity to speak and practise the Bulgarian language in a stress free environment. Aglika did just that through the use of divergent thinking that made her puppet making and puppet theatre performing class enjoyable and relaxed for our students. She ignited students? imagination and had them enthusiastically playing with self-made hands-on puppets in no time! Creativity filled inquiry based learning is her signature. The parents were charmed by the year-end performance so much, that we invited Aglika again this school year. Vania Zaharieva-Alexieva, President, St. Cyril and Methodius Bulgarian Heritage Language School and Folklore Society, Vancouver
Through the construction of a puppet we "construct" ourselves. This project could answer specific educational needs, for example: language (French Immersion, ESL), exploring emotions and behaviours, building routine habits or preparing for the transition from preschool to kindergarten. The children create their own puppet and this character will: speak only in French, or will present a specific emotion and so on. This workshop project has been successfully implemented in the annual "Ready, Set, Go!" program at Ecole Anne Hebert in Vancouver. Time-frame and format for this project can be negotiated. Suitable for Preschool to Grade 2.
The imagination and the creativity of the children is unlimited. Choose any kind of materials to make a puppet for special occasions, themes or interests (health promotion, holidays, seasonal changes, design challenges). The process of creating a puppet is the focus in this project as well as spontaneous play. This project spans two or three 90 minute sessions. Suitable for Kindergarten to Grade 12.
This is a long-term project consisting of: making of a puppet character (using modelling clay), writing a script, playing and ending with a public performance. This project follows the full process of the Art of Puppetry. I could also teach all kinds of puppet systems (string, glove, shadow, glow-in-the-dark, etc.) or bring ready-made puppets to work specifically on story (play-back theatre) and presentation. Recommended time-frame is around nine 90 minute sessions. Suitable for Grades 3 to 12.