Anti-bullying Week – Odd Socks Day

To mark the first day of Anti-Bullying Week, millions of people around the country will be wearing odd socks to encourage people to express themselves and celebrate their uniqueness and individuality.

Here at Hamish & Milo we love socks because we use them as a therapeutic tool in the form of sock puppet pets.

Puppets can be extremely powerful tools to help children to connect with and express their feelings. Puppets can tell a story, express a situation, or portray an emotional reaction to something that has happened, which the child can easily resonate with and feel empathy for.

By talking as a puppet – or to a puppet – children can explore emotional responses or actions and can identify and name feelings that may otherwise be too scary or too powerful to speak of; they can recognise deeper feelings within themselves which allows for the development of self-awareness. Working with puppets can help the child feel a sense of being understood, and not alone with a feeling or experience, and this can be vital for a child’s wellbeing and mental health.

This Anti-bullying Week, you could use sock puppets to talk about bullying – what it is; how it can be spotted; what to do about it; and where to get help. We would like to share with you one of the activities from the Hamish & Milo wellbeing programme that details instructions for how you can make your own sock puppet pets using some odd socks!

Anti-Bullying Week 2022 Odd Socks Day
Anti-Bullying Week Odd Socks Day
Sock Puppet Therapeutic Sock Puppet Kits

How to make a sock puppet pet!

Our sock puppet kits have all the items you need, but if you don’t have access to our kit we suggest a mixture of craft materials from pompoms, felt shapes to ribbons and buttons. Anything goes!

Ask the children to each bring in a clean sock – long enough to cover mid-way up their arm. Spotty, stripes, fluffy – anything they like! Download Sock Puppet Activity Card. These are our recommended steps to making sock puppets!

  • Slip the sock over your hand. Once on, make a C-shape with your hand. Make sure your fingers are in the toe part and your thumb in the heel part. Tuck the sock into the groove between your thumb and fingers to form a mouth.
  • Use a marker to make two dots above the seam for the eyes and a dot for the nose as well.
  • Now take the sock off and lay it flat on the table. The eye and nose marks are just place holders for now.
  • Glue some eyes on – we suggest googly eyes, buttons or pompoms. Use fabric glue, a glue gun or even cotton and thread.

  • Cut shapes out of the felt – maybe make some floppy ears or a tongue!
  • Add other decorations – wool for hair, ribbons, a cardboard hat, pipe cleaner glasses – anything at all to add to the children’s chosen character.

The activity card also includes some template items you might like to use, noses, ears, eyes, and whiskers! Print out and use as items or as templates to cut around.

Watch our short video to find out more as Clare explains the rationale and provides tips and guidance on using sock puppets.

“Sock puppets are an integral feature of our Hamish & Milo wellbeing programme. We use puppets as a ‘distancing technique’, which means children can think and talk through the puppets whilst still experiencing empathy and reflection.” says Clare.

To find out more about how Hamish & Milo Wellbeing Resources can help and support your children please get in touch.

Written by Andrea Middleton

Andrea Middleton Hamish & Milo Lead Consultant

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