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Tactile Letters & Numbers

Tactile Letters & Numbers

The tactile letters and numbers (also called sandpaper or textured) are key to the 3 Year Old Curriculum. Because many 3 year olds do not have the fine motor skills for handwriting activities, I emphasize tracing the letters and numbers with the child's finger. Using the roughness of sand, glitter glue, or yarn adds one more aspect of learning. The tactile letters and numbers are listed in both the 3 Year and 4 Year Curriculum under "Items Needed." Use these to reinforce learning of Number and Letter of the Week.

Suggestion: Have the child say the Number Rhyme or Letter Formation Chant as they trace with their finger.  Trace the number the amount of times as that number (ie. trace the #5, five times.)

Below are several different ways to make these cards using sandpaper, sand, yarn, glitter paper, chipboard, pipe cleaners, puff paint, and glitter glue.  I suggest you make the uppercase and lowercase letters as well as numbers 0-9 at the same time instead of doing the needed ones each week.

Instead of using individual cards, Cami suggested on the ABC Jesus Loves Me Facebook Group using a Blank Book to hold each letter or number.


 

To Make Sandpaper Cards:

Sandpaper Tactile Letters and Numbers

Directions:
1. Print off the templates below - Since you won’t be keeping these, feel free to use scrap paper. You may have to enlarge these to get them to the correct size.
Bubble Uppercase Letter Templates
Bubble Lowercase Letter Templates
Bubble Number Templates

2. Cut out each letter.

3. Trace around each letter on the back of a sheet of fine sandpaper. Remember: the letters must be traced back-to-front so that when you cut them, they'll appear the correct way.

4. Cut out each individual sandpaper letter very neatly. An X-Acto knife can really help with the inside cut outs.

5. Using card stock paper, cut 4x6 rectangles, enough for each letter and number. Use three different colors for the vowels, consonants, and numbers.

6. Glue the letter or number in the middle of the card with rubber cement.

7. Write the Number Rhyme or Letter Formation Chant  on the back of the card so you can easily say the rhymes as your child traces the shape.

Tip from an ABCJLM user: Go to the local scrapbooking or school supply store with a couple of sheets of Sandpaper and used their Die-cutting system to cut out all the uppercase and lowercase letters as well as the numbers from 1-25! Thanks Heather!!

Thank you to Dina for the image.

 

To Make Button Counting Cards:

Button Tactile Numbers

1. Cut cardstock into flashcard size or use 3x5" cards.

2. Handwrite or use the Bubble Number Templates (you may have to enlarge these to get them to the correct size) to create a number on each card. 

3.  Add the correct number of buttons.  Have the child touch each button while counting.

Thank you to Jamie for allowing me to share this idea and her photo.

 

To Make Sand Cards:

Option #1:  On Cards

Tactile Letters and Numbers

Directions:
1. Print off the templates below - Since you won’t be keeping these, feel free to use scrap paper. You may have to enlarge these to get them to the correct size.
Bubble Uppercase Letter Templates
Bubble Lowercase Letter Templates
Bubble Number Templates

2. Cut out each letter. Glue onto cardstock or cardboard.

3. Drizzle or paint glue on the bubble letter. Sprinkle sand on the letter. Shake off the excess.

Thank you to Lindsay for allowing me to share this idea and her photo.

Option #2:  Using Foam Puzzles

Sand Glue Letters 2
Directions:
1. Purchase the following supplies:
Foam Puzzle (Letters and Numbers)
Spray Glue 
Sand (purchase colored sand or spray paint the color(s) you desire)
Liquid Nail
Index Cards (may want to cut in half depending on the size of your puzzle pieces)

Sand Glue Letters

2. Pop out all letters and numbers.

3.  Lay the puzzle pieces on a piece of cardboard and spray with spray adhesive.  (Only do a few letters at a time)  Immediately cover with sand. Allow to dry. 

4. Using liquid nail glue the finished pieces to index cards.

Thank you to Jen for allowing me to share this idea and her photo.

 

To Make Yarn Cards:

Yarn Letters and Numbers

Directions and Image #1:
1. Cut out flash-card size pieces from cardboard boxes.

2. Glue scrapbooking paper over the cardboard (optional).

3. Using a pencil, write each letter/number on the paper.

4. Hot glue yarn over the pencil marks, winding around several times to make the letter/numbers thicker.

May make the letters dual-sided with a capital letter on one side and lower case on the other.

Thank you to Malinda for allowing me to share this idea and her photo.

 

Yarn Tactile Letter and Numbers

Directions and Image #2:

1. Cut up a box.  I wanted the pieces to be large enough for my daughter to trace easily but small enough to handle them in her hand well.  They ended up being about 5"x5".  It took a little more than 1 medium sized box to make all of them. 

2.  Glue scrapbook paper onto each one.  I just used Elmer's glue for this.  The 12x12 paper worked great cut into fourths. For the numbers, I only glued paper onto one side.  For the letters, I wanted to put upper case on one side and lower case on the other so I glued paper to both sides. 

3. Using a hot glue gun, glue on yarn.  I tried to wrap it around 3-4 times per letter to allow for a large, easy to trace letter.

Thank you to Cindy for allowing me to share this idea and her photo.


To Make Pipe Cleaner Cards:

Option #1 - On Cards

Pipe Cleaner Tactile Letters

1. Cut cardstock into flashcard size.

2. Handwrite or use the templates below (you may have to enlarge these to get them to the correct size) to create a letter or number on each card. 
Bubble Uppercase Letter Templates
Bubble Lowercase Letter Templates
Bubble Number Templates

3.  Bend and cut pipe cleaners to glue on the letter or number.

Thank you to Dana for allowing me to share this idea and her photo.

 

Pipecleaner Tactile Letters

Option #2 - On Lids

Directions:

1. Collect lids (bottle/jar/frozen juice).

2. Bend and cut the pipe cleaners into shape.

3. Paste them on the bottle/jar lids using white latex glue or hot glue.

Thank you to Dawn for allowing me to share this idea and her photo.

 

To Make Chipboard Cards or Burlap Letters:

Chipboard Tactile Letters and Numbers

1. Purchase a set of chipboard letters and numbers (a scrapbooking item) or Burlap Letters.

2. Stick the letters and numbers to cardboard, index cards, or cardstock.

Thank you to Savannah for allowing me to share this ideas and her photo.  Thank you to Cami for sharing the burlap idea.

 

To Make Glitter Cards:

Glitter Paper Letters & Numbers  Glitter Numbers

1. Using precut letters and numbers, write on the letter or number with glitter glue or use glue sprinkled with glitter.

2. Glue the letter or number to index cards.

Thank you to Barbara for sharing this idea.

-or-

1. Print off the templates below - Since you won’t be keeping these, feel free to use scrap paper. You may have to enlarge these to get them to the correct size.
Bubble Uppercase Letter Templates
Bubble Lowercase Letter Templates
Bubble Number Templates

2. Cut out each letter and number. Trace each on glitter paper. Cut out and glue to cardboard or cardstock paper.

Thank you to Alicia for sharing this idea and letters photo.  Thank you to Dana for the numbers image.

 

To Make Puff Paint Cards:

Puff Paint Letters

Directions:

1.  Mix equal parts flour, salt, and water (approx. 1/2 cup of each) with some food coloring or use Puffy Paint. Puffy paint will have a smooth texture while the homemade puff paint is textured due to the salt.

2.  Place in a condiment squirt container or in a ziptop bag with the corner snipped off.  

3.  Pipe the letters and number onto preprinted flashcards or index cards. 

4.  Let dry overnight.

Thank you to Bonnie for sharing this idea.

Puffy Tactile Letter and Numbers

Directions:

1.  Purchase a set of letter and number flashcards

2.  Using Puffy Paint paint over the flashcard.  Purposely do not smooth out the paint.  The texture helps the child feel the formation better. 

Thank you to Yvette for sharing this idea.

 

To Make Rice and Bean Cards:

 Misc Tactile Letters

Directions:
1. Print off the templates below - Since you won’t be keeping these, feel free to use scrap paper. You may have to enlarge these to get them to the correct size.
Bubble Uppercase Letter Templates
Bubble Lowercase Letter Templates
Bubble Number Templates

2. Cut out each letter. Glue onto cardstock or cardboard.

Misc Tactile Letters 2  Misc Tactile Letters 3

3. Drizzle or paint glue on the bubble letter. Sprinkle yarn, beans, sand, rubber/plastic pieces, and quinoa on the letter or number. Shake off the excess.

Thank you to Carrie for allowing me to share this idea and her photos.

Purchase:

Sandpaper Letters & NumbersSandpaper Letters & Numbers -or- Tactile Sandpaper Numerals

 

WonderFoam Big Letters - These letters are textured.

 

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