The use of puppets as a strategy for communicating with children with type 1 diabetes mellitus

Valéria de Cássia Sparapani, Eufemia Jacob, Francine de Montigny, Luzia Iara Pfeifer, Amanda Mota Pacciulio Sposito, Regina Aparecida Garcia de Lima, Lucila Castanheira Nascimento


The use of puppets is an effective strategy for promoting children to express thoughts and feelings about daily experiences. However, very little information is available about its use in children with type 1 diabetes mellitus. The procedures for using puppets during qualitative interviews in children with Type 1 diabetes mellitus were described, which involved three steps: 1) constructing the scenario − a “stage” that simulates the environments they encounter (school, home); 2) making puppets that represent the child and people (parents, teachers, siblings, friends) encountered daily, and 3) promoting expression of thoughts and feelings using puppets during qualitative interviews. The advantages of using puppets were to allow children with type 1 diabetes mellitus to freely express thoughts and feelings about living with diabetes, to provide them with opportunities to demonstrate diabetes management behaviors, and expose factors that may interfere with diabetes management. A limitation to the use of puppets was the interviewer requiring skills to dynamically engage the child and encourage their active participation during the interaction. The use of puppets was recommended as a creative strategy for use in children with type 1 diabetes mellitus during qualitative interviews.


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Journal of Nursing Education and Practice

ISSN 1925-4040 (Print)   ISSN 1925-4059 (Online)

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