Moving hands in classroom assemblages: puppet play in a post-world

DANIELS, Karen (2020). Moving hands in classroom assemblages: puppet play in a post-world. English Teaching: Practice and Critique.

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Purpose – This paper aims to propose a reading of children’s small toy/puppet play that takes account of bodily movements within classroom assemblages. The researcher/author created representations of episodes of activity that focused on children’s ongoing bodily movements as they followed their interests in one Early Years classroom in England. Design/methodology/approach – By drawing a contrast between a traditional logocentric interpretation of puppet play and an embodied theorisation, this paper provides a way of understanding young children’s literacy practices where these are seen as generated through bodily movement and affective atmospheres within classroom assemblages. Findings – Analysis suggests that affective atmospheres were produced by the speed, slowness, dynamics and stillnesses of children’s hand movements as they manipulated the small toys/puppets. Three interrelated contributions are made that generate further understandings of embodied meaning making. First, this paper theorises relations between hand movements, materials and affective atmospheres within classroom assemblages. Second, the technique of analysing still shots of hand movements offers a way of understanding the semiotic and affective salience of hand movement and stillness. Finally, the paper offers a methodology for re-examining taken-for-granted pedagogical practices such as puppet play. Originality/value – Together these contributions re-explore literacy as an embodied and affective endeavour, thereby countering logocentric framings of early literacy.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy; 2003 Language Studies
Identification Number:
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic Elements
Depositing User: Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited: 11 Jun 2020 09:30
Last Modified: 17 Mar 2021 23:45

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