Children lend hands, ears to storyteller

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Dru Woods is a storyteller, musician and puppeteer and was the special guest of Whitehouse Community Library along with dozens of her puppet friends on Friday, June 29.

With so many puppets in the variety of stories she tells, Woods asked for volunteers to be her puppeteers. There was no lack of children willing to aid in the puppetry.

Volunteers also aided in playing musical instruments and answered questions, thereby adding elements to some of the tales Woods recounted.

Woods, who spent 30 years in education, mostly teaching junior high theatre and public speaking, taught storytelling and puppetry in her classrooms.

“Junior high is a hard time because of the changes that goes on in a kid’s life,” Woods stated. “But it’s perfect for theatre because the hormones are raging and every day is different. They’re creative, so it’s a fun thing to teach. I much prefer teaching theatre and speech to English. Eighth graders do not care if a word is an adverb or an adjective.”

Woods said she entered education because she knew she “wanted to make a difference in kid’s lives.”

After retiring from teaching, Woods continued educating through her visits to libraries and schools.

“This is wonderful,” Woods commented. “You have no discipline problems that you have to correct and you don’t have to grade papers or average grades, but you get to be creative with your kids.”

Though she and husband David reside in Holly Lake Ranch, Woods travels all over the state of Texas to perform for and work with children, with a total of 15 library visits scheduled this summer alone.

“I think that you can teach lessons from a story that children will remember,” Woods stated of the purpose and importance of her musical, puppeteering storytelling venture.

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