The Kids On The Block (KOTB) puppeteers have been entertaining second-graders in Anne Arundel County for a decade and a half with a series of plays about bullying, as well as the positive aspects of learning to use kindness and caring in how we treat others, both in and out of school. All children love puppets, so what better way to teach children how to recognize and prevent bullying than with puppets?
The KOTB program is nationwide and was taken up the Assistance League of the Chesapeake in 2003. Each year, from October through April, the organization’s cast and crew visit schools within the country for 45-minute shows. Members freely donate their time and talents for an average of nine to 15 performances each school year.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we were unable to offer live shows. Because of this, the KOTB team, in conjunction with Anne Arundel County Public Schools, has created a video of our show for use in the schools. It includes four skits and runs about 45 minutes. At each showing, students will also see the puppets in person and ask questions about the video.
In the next few months, we will be adding a picture book to coincide with the video to reinforce the four skits. More than 20,000 students have viewed performances over the years, with more than 4,000 hours donated by our volunteers.