Somerville Public Library is throwing the parents of small children a lifeline. This Saturday marks the return of the library's "Puppet Story Time with Leigh and Friends." There's a book, there's a few puppets. It is very chill. Mercifully chill.
Nothing is unboxed. There are no kid-fluencers. There aren’t any lightsabers or Trolls on tour or ear-worm theme songs that will haunt your dreams. Just quality stories, read well, in quick videos. A total lifesaver.
Negotiating the new normal with someone that will lick a playground slide is tough and library-grade normalcy is helpful. A story read is different than a story watched, and kids know that. Kids need that. So three cheers for the library. Ten minutes of relative calm is huge.
(Link to the article is here.)
-- SEAN MALONEY,
"SCOUT SOMERVILLE" MAGAZINE
“I’m so grateful that I can continue doing this work on Zoom, but of course there’s
nothing like an in-person show and connecting with the kids face-to-face.” - Leigh Baltzer
By Jenna Manto, The Patriot Ledger
Posted Sep 23, 2020 at 5:15 PM
HULL — The Hull Public Library’s socially distant puppet shows are providing some relief for South Shore families struggling to keep youngsters learning — and entertained — during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Every Wednesday at 10:30 a.m. through October, families can lay out their blankets on the large grassy area next to the Hull Public Library, grab a snack, and watch as Leigh Baltzer reads stories found at the library through the animated voices of her various fluffy puppets.
“Kids are looking and parents are looking for something to do with the little ones right now that’s not in front of a screen,” Baltzer said. “I think people are (trying to) get out and enjoy things while they can.”
The Patriot Ledger: Hull Library Hosts Socially Distanced Puppet Shows
AT COHASSET LIBRARY
"The Cohasset Library highly recommends Leigh and Friends for a dynamic puppet story time. The addition of the puppets adds another experiential layer for our young emerging readers."
PRESIDENT OF THE PA
AT SU ESCUELA, HINGHAM
"Thank you so much for today, the kids had a really great time and you were fantastic. It was so nice that you also brought some Spanish into the show. I really wanted to thank you again for such a great show."
AT SSCPS, NORWELL
"Leigh and friends kept my 22 Kindergartners entertained (make that enthralled!) for 45 minutes. Leigh was flexible and responsive to our curriculum needs, and tailored her show accordingly. A delightful performance by a talented puppeteer!"
OF ORIGINAL SHOW
"The Prank of the Paint was adorable. The characters were friendly, funny, and strong-willed & the puppeteers were fantastic!
I loved the plot, the jokes were hilarious, and it was all performed with such joy. I look forward to seeing what Leigh comes up with for her next original show!"
"We had Leigh and her puppet friends host a story time for the kids yesterday and it was a great success! Leigh helped turn the pages of the big books, and her puppets read the stories, with audience chiming in, too! The program drew a huge crowd for our little library .
After the 30 minute program (songs, too) the children were able to have a meet & greet with Leigh and her friends. Newton greeted each kid by name! Leigh was warm and cheerful, her puppets charming."
HARVARD PROFESSOR, AND MOM
Thank you so much for the puppet show on Zoom! My daughter LOVED it.
She was super into all of the puppets and the story, “Waiting Is Not Easy.” What a great story for this time we are going through. It’s such a hopeful message when you apply it to what we are all going through
right now - that there will be something beautiful at the end of all of this.
Thank you again. Your work is a blessing to all who are lucky enough to encounter it.”
SECOND PARISH UU RE COMMITTEE CHAIR
Thank you so much for the adorable puppet story time video. Even I was wondering what the surprise was. It has a great moral about waiting and most of the time it’s really worth the wait. The children will love it. What suspense! The way you put it together with the puppets on one screen and the book on the other and the way you synchronized the puppets singing was amazing!! You should be very proud - I know you put a lot of time and effort into it.
The Puppet Story Time videos are not just entertainment to keep the kids from climbing the walls. they are uplifting, funny, and one hundred percent original. Even though my kids and grandkids are grown, I enjoy watching them myself as an adult! The videos have a positive, uplifting message and the puppets each have strong personalities of their own that make me laugh when I recognize myself in them! Watching these is time well spent.