Dragon Puppets

Learn how to make a dragon puppet with your MFA art kit or materials from home

In Japan, people traditionally believe that dragons are powerful and protective. Japanese dragons are thought to live in the mountains, lakes, rivers, and the sky. They are made of parts from other powerful creatures. Take a look at the dragon in the picture above. Can you find a body like a snake? Claws like an eagle? Horns like a deer?

If you have an MFA art kit for this very activity, you already have all the materials you need! If not, start by gathering all the materials below.


completed colorful dragon puppet planted on popsicle sticks in grass


You will need:

  • Dragon Puppet Template
  • markers, crayons, or colored pencils
  • scissors
  • tape, a glue stick, or liquid glue
  • decorative materials such as pom-poms, cellophane, googly eyes, foam shapes, and colorful paper
  • popsicle sticks or small sticks
  • hole punch
  • metal brads

Step 1

template for dragon puppet with dragon head, body, and tail labeled
Download, print, and cut out the Dragon Puppet Template.

Step 2

Coloring in dragon body parts with markers of a variety of colors
Color in your dragon with pencils, crayons, or markers in as many different colors as you’d like.

Step 3

pieces of colored paper and foam heart glued onto dragon body parts
If you have colored paper, tear or cut your paper into different shapes and then glue it onto your dragon. Glue some foam shapes, too, if you have them!

Step 4

small pom-poms and googly eyes glued onto dragon parts
If you have googly eyes or pom-poms, glue these onto your dragon. Get creative with decorating your dragon!

Step 5

red cellophane cut in the shape of wings, attached to the top of dragon body
Your dragon might need some wings. Use scissors to carefully cut cellophane, colored paper, or regular paper in the shape of wings and tape or glue them to your dragon’s body.

Step 6

hole punched out of dragon body part with hole punch
When you are done decorating, use a hole punch, sharp pencil, or the tip of a pen to carefully make a hole through each of the four black circles on the template.

Step 7

popsicle sticks attached to the underside of dragon body parts
Attach one popsicle stick behind the head and one popsicle stick behind the tail. You can use liquid glue or tape.

Step 8

dragon body parts attached together with metal brads in the punched holes
Place the tail on top of the body so the holes line up. Attach the tail and body using a metal brad: stick the brad through both holes and press the two pieces of the brad apart in the back. Do the same thing to attach the head and body. Now your dragon puppet can move!