To introduce the children to a puppet character who will be used throughout the dental health lessons and to establish this new character as a friend who wants to help the children learn all about their teeth and mouth and how to take good care of themselves. The use of the puppet is optional. Each lesson can be presented with or without the use of "Smiley, the Super Pup.

Materials Needed:
Colored felt

Buttons (optional)
Needle and thread
Felt markers (permanent ink)
Activity Page, "Smiley, the Super Pup" Pattern
Activity Page, "Smiley Face"

Background Information for the Teacher:
Because children enjoy puppet stories, a puppet character, "Smiley, the Super Pup," has been designed to be used throughout the lessons on dental health.

These puppet stories have been developed to reinforce the concepts that have been introduced in each lesson. Each puppet story repeats the main ideas of the lesson and includes several questions for the puppet to ask the children. The questions are designed to be success oriented so that more than one answer can be correct. Try to encourage a variety of answers in order to involve as many students as possible.

The script of each puppet story provides you with a "working" model for use with the puppet. You should feel free, however, to change the wording, to repeat the questions in order to involve as many children as possible, or to drop any questions that seem inappropriate for your particular class.

Although the use of the puppet stories is optional, using "Smiley, the Super Pup" at the end of each lesson will help the children realize that the concepts of each lesson are all connected to one central theme -- dental health.

Before starting this introductory lesson, make "Smiley, the Super Pup" by using the patterns and instructions given on the activity page titled "Smiley, the Super Pup."

Suggestion for storing the puppet: Using a shoe box or any other box of similar size, make a dog-house in which to keep Smiley when not in use. Turn the box upside down and cut out an opening for the door. The top of a shoe box may be folded to form a V-shaped roof for the house. Depending on what art supplies are available, you may want to paint the box or cover it with paper.

Starting the Lesson:
Tell the children that you want them to meet a new friend. Have the children close their eyes while you get the "Smiley, the Super Pup" puppet and put it on your hand. Tell the children to open their eyes, and then say, "This is a new friend of ours, Smiley, the Super Pup. Would you say 'Hi' to Smiley?"

Move Smiley as though waving to the children, and using your own voice or one you make up especially for the character, say, "Hello, boys and girls. I'm glad to see you. My name is Smiley. Your teacher has told me that you are very special boys and girls. Can you give me a big smile? What terrific smiles you haves I feel lucky to be with you. We're going to have fun together learning about how to take good care of our teeth."

"I have to go now, but I will see you again soon. Bye"

Put the puppet away until you are ready to use it in the next lesson. Tell the children that Smiley will be telling them lots of good stories about teeth.

Classroom Activities:
1. Rhythm Activity - teach the children the following rhythmic chant:

Smiley, the Super Pup, came to our room.

Smiley, the Super Pup, come again soon.

Smiley, the Super Pup, teach us to do,

Things that will make us smile like you.

2. Art Activity: Give each child a copy of Activity Page, "Smiley Face." Have children point to the dog's eyes. Have children point to the dog's nose. Have children point to the dog's teeth. Have children count the dog's top teeth. Distribute crayons to the children so they can color their dog picture.

You may want to discuss with the children that some dogs are nice, friendly dogs, and some dogs are not nice and friendly. Explain to the children that they should not pet dogs unless they know the dog is a nice, friendly dog.

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