Storytelling Puppetry Virtual Exhibit

Storytelling Puppetry Exhibition



Thank you for taking the journey to this page.  The puppets and stories in this exhibition were created by our immigrant neighbors living in Central Arkansas who participated in El Zócalo’s storytelling workshops in Fall 2016.

Participants were asked to create a puppet of a special person in their life who then serves as a guide in expressing their life stories.

These are stories of immigrants: stories of journeys, of hope, of home.

We invite you to take time to read through each story honoring the lives, voices and love behind them.





When I had my first son, I was Happy.
When I came to the U.S., my son did not came with me.
When I first came, I went to Baptist Church
When I first came to the English class, I nervous






My name is Katie.  I am 36 years old.  I was born in Laos.  I got marry when I was 26 years old.  When I was single I felt very lonely even though it has a lot of friends  family.  But some day I couldn’t talk with them, and I always miss my family.  In my life i have 4 miracle things that happened it including the happiness and sadness such as I met my husband and came to U.S.A. and have 2 sons now.  I visited my mom the last time before she passed away.  I am really sorry sometime I didn’t make sense to be a mom and we didn’t talk each other too much.  Right now the most important in my life is family.  I will teach my sons how to love the family.



avelina-puppet ~Avelina~

My special grandmother.  She is very s
pecial with me.  Because she milk one glass for me at 5 am evry day.  She is very active.  She works on the land.  She planted corn, black beans, pumpkin.  She care for cow, horses, goat.  I have a lot of food for me I say thank u Go






I study architecture in Syria and I had wonderful time with my friends.  Then I got marid and I was very happy then I got 2 boys Talal and Ghayth.  They are doctors now in USA.  I’m very broud of them.  Befor two month I came to America and I like it.  It’s a wonderful county.  There are nice people my neighbors are very friendy.
I like nature tree, flowrs, river, mountain, sky.

I loved living here.




When I go University, I felt nervous.  After two years I marry Luis and I have felt very happy because he is a good person and he support.  When I have problems he is loving with me and with the twins babys.
In my first job I was very enthusiastic to take [care] of my patient.  I was very careful with her and attentive because she told me that she is
already going to die.






On Ody’s words:

Karina was born in 1981 in Xalapa Ver. Mexico.  She is our second daughter, she has alwa
ys been a very extroverted girl, she graduated as a social worker like me and started working right away.  After a couple of years, she started to travel and planned to go to USA to visit her sister who lives in New England.  She stayed for years with a very nice family, traveled a lot and learned English also.

Ricardo (the man who looked after her as a father in USA) became so sick for years and Karina took care of him to the last of his days.  It was a very hard time for her because she was devoted to him.

But God’s time could not be more perfect because after so many sorrows and problems Karina passed, she met Hector and her life made a great happy change.



Remember my son at the. to much.
Remember when I was as school.
Remember my old friends from school
I miss my son is in Honduras and someday will be with him
When I can from my country were one difficult time of my life. Because in life because I miss my parents and my son.



South Korea

My name is Ji-Yeon. I was born in South Korea.  I was passed out and woke up at the Hospital.  The policeman helped me.  I will never forget him.  I met my friend at work, he died.  He was only 30 years old.  It was heart breaking.  I moved to the United States of America and married my husband.  It was very hard with communication and two different cultures, it is still and maybe forever.  One of my friends died.  She was special to me.  Because of her, I reflect on my life.  I try to understand others, also care about different ethnicities.  I realize that everything is connected each other.  I would like to support others and community.


magaliIn the year 2007, I came to this country and then I had my first baby and then I got married in the united states
in the 2011 and finally I had my 3rd child.  She is a girl

My sister is especial because she has big heart and good sentimientos [feelings] always are al pe
ndiente [concerned] the todos [for everyone].  Always think en alguien [someone] más before she.

She has un enfermedad [illness] muy difícil y eso la hace aun más especial for me.



My name is Laura.  I born in Mexico.  I have 6 brothers and sisters.  I am the smallest of all.  I remember when my dad died.  He had cancer, I miss him a lot.  I graduated of stylist  I worked in beauty salón, I met my husband I moved to U.S.A.  My son was born.

Now I have 8 years of marriage.  When I can go to visit my family to Mexico, I go.   I enjoy playing with my son and help with their homework and learn English.



elizabetShe is good people every time happy and very calm

She make good food

When my father scolds she say my came with my



My Son’s Storychoi

My precious treasure from God is my son who named Joseph.  He has brown hair, small brown eyes, and a cute flat nose.  He plays soccer well.  He is always wearing a soccer jersey like a world star Ronaldo.

He plays piano very well.  When he was young, He received the great prize at the piano competition.  I’m proud of him.

Now, he is 20 years old. but he is a child for me.  I love him so much.


~Dalymarie Torres~
Puerto Rico

My name is Dalymarie Torres.  I was born in December in Ponce P.R.  I have 26 years old.  Since childhood, I liked sports.  My father always said, my daughter will be a good athlete.  Always participated in all school sports but volleyball was my favorite sports.  When I was eleven years old, my parents enrolled my in the volleyball team of my city.  From that age to twenty three years, I played.  Something I will never forget is that my paretns never missed a sporting event.  Right now I live in Arkansas with my husband and we play different sports too.






My husband is about my father.  He pas away las year, Febrero was the last time I was talking to him, I always remember the god advicers from my lovely father  I know one day I{m going to see him.

Thanks dad for everiteen.




~Ana Rosa~


Last year I was married.  I felt happy, nervous.  When I went to my first day of school, I felt excited and happy.  When I came to the United States, I felt sad, nervous, worried and homesick, when I turned 15th years old, I felt happy, laugh and excited.

I love my life.






~Francisca ~francisca-puppet

When I came to the United States, I started work in mcdonalds.  I was so exited because I was making money to buy diferent stuff, a year later I met with my husband and married. A year later I had my first child  so I cant’t go to school and so, I wasn’t thinking learning English was so important until years later when my son started needing my help for his homework  it was so hard to help him so I realized I needed to Learn English although it is something it’s a lot for me.






My graduation was a very special day and the day that I immigrated to United States, and it was a very special day in my life when my son was born.  My son is very happy, but it is difficult for my son to talk.







My name is Joy.  I came from Thailand.  I have been here 1 year.  I came here with my husband.  He was exchange military in US two and half years and we go back to Thailand.  First time for me about live in another country.  It was hard to me.  Here’s different kind of food, culture, weather, different side of car and rode lan.  But in the US have man thing to do here’s beautiful place I went to Navy Pier, Chicago.  I ride a city bus tour aroud the city I saw a big Ferris wheel.  I saw boar look like boat in the movie Pirates of the Caribbean.  I like over there so much.  There were beautiful place.  My husband and I planed to travel around US. Befor we go back to Thailand  Next plan for us Disney World, Niagara falls, Grand Canyon  I love USA.




I remember the moments with Dad and then in remember life in the field and the momento way first child was born and the when when I get married.









2015 I have one beautiful baby so happy.  I had my first girl.

2012 I met my best friend Rosario.  She is wonderful. Some strangers because I have not seen them again.

2013 I met new people.

2016 New life I got arrived.  I hope my new child.





When I went school, I was 10 years old.

When I was 25 years old, I married and was 26 years old, when I went to the U.S.  I was nervous.

I am 40 years old, I go to school ingles class.  I have nerous.






My name is Dilma Rodriguez.  I grew up in Guerrero Mexico.  I came to the United States in 2007.  I have nine brothers and sisters.  Now have 27 years old.  I’m so very young.








Thank you for the generous support of the Arkansas Arts Council in this project.

Thank you to UALR’s Departments of World Languages and Theater and Dance,
and the service learning workshops who delivered 12 workshops to the community

Thank you to the Little Rock Adult Education Center, St. Andrew’s United Methodist Church, Chicot Primary and the Esther D. Nixon Library for hosting workshops and allowing us to work with their students and communities.

Thank you to the Schedler Honor’s College for conceptualizing the project and garnishing support.

Thank you to Jan Wolfe and Katie Campbell for training workshop leaders.

Thank you to the Conway Symphony Orchestra for bringing music to the correlating event, The Halloween Tree.