Education: Puppet Pedagogy

The Audience: Mexicans of all ages, gathered around a miniature theater set up in a public square, a factory, or a harvest field.

The-Scene: a human mouth.

The Play: three fantastically ugly puppets, representing bacteria, loosen a lower tooth, look for a ladder to knock out an upper. Enter the Dentist. Enter also a lady puppet in a tubelike dress, a gentleman with hog-bristled pate. Senorita La Pasta (toothpaste) and Senor El Cepillo (toothbrush) kill the dental gremlins. In a quick change of scene the magnified mouth vanishes, its possessor reappears. An apple-cheeked urchin named Comino, he promises to brush his teeth forever...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!