The theater wouldn’t be complete without the Greek comedy and tragedy masks. These masks were used by the ancient Greeks to let the people know what type of play they are watching. You can teach your children how to appreciate theater by letting them help you make these symbolic masks. Here’s an easy way how:
- Prepare the materials. You need clay, a stick, and a paint to make the Greek comedy and tragedy masks. You will only use the paint to decorate the masks so you can leave this out, if you don’t have any paint readily available at home.
- Form the masks. Make two balls of the same size out of the clay. Flatten the balls to about 1/4 of an inch by pressing your thumb on it. You may allow your child to do this for you to get him involved in the project early. Next, turn the balls into ovals by slightly pressing its sides. Then, pinch the clay’s top left and right side to form a flat surface. Form a chin for the clay ovals by pinching the bottom of the two clays to make them pointy.
- Make the expressions. Form the eyes of the Greek comedy and tragedy masks by poking two holes on the masks using a stick. If you’re letting your child do this, make sure that the edges of the stick are not sharp. Make the eyes expressive by slanting them a bit. Next, make noses for the masks by forming two bits of clay into small triangles, and putting them on the middle of the masks. When you’re done, form the mouths of the masks by using the stick to poke a smiling mouth on one of the masks, and a crying mouth on the other.
- Paint the masks. You may opt to put color to your Greek comedy and tragedy masks to make them more attractive. You can color it gray to make it look serious, or gold to make it better fitting to a theater presentation. You can also ask your child to participate in coloring the masks. Ask him what colors he wants the masks to be in, and let him color them.
- Use paper plates to make the masks. If your child wants Greek comedy and tragedy masks that he can actually put on his face, you can easily make him one using paper plates. Use a pencil to trace the facial expression of the Greek comedy and tragedy masks. Next, cutout the eyes and the mouth drawings in the paper plate, and use a marker to draw a nose for each of the masks. You may choose to put beard and hair on the masks for fun.
Once you’re done decorating your Greek comedy and tragedy mask, you can
now use it to make stories come alive. Use it just like how you use
puppets when storytelling. Use different tones of voices for each mask
to arouse the curiosity of your child. Then, if possible, try asking
your child to go with you in the theater to watch a child-friendly play.