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Recommended ages: All Ages

United Kingdom

Documentary, Ainslie Henderson, 2 min.

One of the definitions of “animate” is to bring to life, and Ainslie Henderson beautifully demonstrates this through his found-object puppets and stop motion animation in the short film Stems.


Talking Points:                                                                                                                         

  • Like many short films, if you watch Stems a second or third time, you’re bound to notice something new and find fresh meaning. Watch the film again and see if you can guess what the different puppets are made out of.
  • The filmmaker describes the puppets as tiny actors that only ever have one role to play. Pick a character from this film or from another film, and think of a new role in a new story for them to play. What is their name? Where are they from and what are their goals.

Get Creative:

  • The puppets in Stems were made using found objects. Find some things in your own home to create a character! It can be flat or 3-dimensional. Tip: use pipe cleaners, twist ties, clay or rubber bands to hold things together.

Major support provided by New York Life Foundation, the 2020 city-wide sponsor for the Summer Reading Program. Lead support for Brooklyn Public Library's Summer Reading 2020 program is provided by the National Grid Foundation. The program is supported by Con Edison and Macy's.

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