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Make Your Own Tactile Letter Cards

Children learn about the world around them through their senses: seeing, hearing, smelling, and tasting. And of course…

Children Learn by Touching

Here at All About Learning Press, weโ€™re really big on the multisensory approach because learning is so much more effective when children learn through all their senses. Our tactile letter cards provide a great multisensory way for little ones to learn about the alphabet.

Our free download includes uppercase and lowercase letter templates, instructions for creating your tactile letter cards, and tips for using your cards. Ready to go?

Tactile Letter Cards download graphic

Instructions for Tactile Letter Cards

  1. Print the uppercase and lowercase letter card pages contained in this activity download. Cut out the letter cards.
  2. Prepare the colored sand using the simple instructions in the PDF.
  3. Spread glue in the shape of the letters, sprinkle with colored sand, and let dry thoroughly. The cards are ready to use!
Using colored sand on tactile letter card

Playing with Tactile Letter Cards

There are so many ways to use the tactile letter cards.

As your child learns the names and sounds of each letter, have her feel the letter as she says the name or sound.

Preschooler touching tactile letter card

Is your child ready for more? Use both sets of cards to help your child begin to recognize and match uppercase and lowercase letters.

Preschooler matching tactile letter cards

Older children can be encouraged to use the letter cards to spell their names or short words.

Preschooler spelling 'mom'

Other Materials for Tactile Letter Cards

If you’d like to make tactile letter cards but don’t want to make colored sand, that’s okay! We’ve got more great ideas for you. You can make tactile cards with all kinds of materials. In addition to our colored sand cards, we made cards using glitter, pipe cleaners, rice, dried mung beans, and fabric. Aren’t they awesome?

Variations of tactile letter cards

Have you made tactile letter cards? What materials did you use? Let us know in the comments below!

If your child enjoyed this hands-on letter recognition activity, why donโ€™t you try some of our other letter recognition activities, too?

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Brittany Alessio

says:

Thank you times a million

Melissa

says:

thank you

Maya

says:

This looks like the Montessori sand paper letter cards. I love the all ideas, especially ones with grains.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Maya,
We have been told that these cards are easier to make than the sandpaper letters too.

Elizabeth

says:

Thanks for the free printables! My little guy is having a tough time with letter recognition, I am going to add this to the mix. I love that he can help make them, and we can use different mediums for different letters! Perhaps this will make it click for him. :-)

J. Muhammad

says:

Wow…I never thought to make these tactile cards myself. I did not know they were that easy to DIY…I’ve been search high and low for them (on sale). Well thats out the door after watching this video. The other ideas at the end of the post are neat too. My dd loves glitter and those chenille stems. Looks like a afterschool project for mommy :)

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Have fun crafting, Mommy!

Laura Stephenson

says:

This is an awesome idea. Letter recognition has been one of the biggest obstacles for my children. We will be making these cards.

Mallory

says:

My son and I made these and he is obsessed. I was going to spend the money on the Montessori sandpaper letters but I’m glad that we could spend the time together and make these instead.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Mallory,
I especially like the idea of making these with your child, and not just for him. Great idea!

Daniella

says:

Really needed this! A great solution for my sensory child! Thank you for the instructions.

Joanna Adams

says:

I love this idea of making your own. My youngest has sensory processing disorder, and giving her the sensory experiences she craves is a daily challeng. Looking forward to making these when she starts learning her letters!

Cailin

says:

Such an awesome idea to make learning hands -on!

Sara

says:

Well, fun! I could see my 4yo girl having some fun with glitter paint pens and these cards!

Mehgan

says:

About 2 years ago I bought some very durable wooden sandpaper letters from an etsy shop. They were quite expensive, but they are beautifully made and show almost no signs of wear. Unfortunately my first 2 sons were never as enthralled with them as I was. I’m hoping my third son will get a lot of use out of them this year! I love that you are offering an easy DIY version of these, if I had seen a post like this back then I would have probably tried making my own!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Mehgan,
I know how it is to spend money on something you think is great, but you kids never really get into. I spent a lot of money on nice quality art media and craft materials, and four kids never got into them much. But my 5th… She is making my investment worth it! Maybe one of your future children will get a lot of use out of those sandpaper letters too.

Rosanne

says:

Looks so fun. Thanks!

Rosanne

says:

Thanks for the great idea!

Rosanne

says:

This looks awesome! My little girls would love it. Thanks!

DC

says:

Love that we can make these together!

Sheila

says:

What a fun idea! Thank you!

Jori Wachowiak

says:

Great idea!

Jenni Jones

says:

What a fun take on Montessori “sandpaper letters – cost effective, fun, and educational!

Cat

says:

That’s a great idea!

roslyn harris

says:

I have started to make these. I am using colored sand and am excited to use them this year!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

I’m sure your students will love them, Roslyn!

nuk

says:

Great idea, thank you.

Marilyn Fuqua

says:

such a great simple idea! and so many feels can be used!

Chris

says:

Thanks love this. I think we’ll go find sand paper too. :)

Diana McBride

says:

This is a new idea to me and I so wish I’d known about these when my eldest was younger. I will defo try it with my little! Thanks for making it available to us here ๐Ÿ˜€๐Ÿ˜ƒ

Rebecca

says:

I will be trying this this year with my 1st grader she is left handed and often writes her letters backwards.

Kayla

says:

This is perfect for our tot school letter of the week. We can make our letter of the week on monday and use it for the rest of the year. I really like Robin E. ideas of using different textures for each letter. Thanks for the printables!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Kayla,
Have fun! And, if you feel up to it, we would love to see a photo of a group of letters with different textures.

Stephanie

says:

I am teaching a child who is having trouble remembering some of his letters as we cover them. I would love the All About Reading Pre Level to see if this would make a difference. We have tried some tactile learning. He remembers some letters and some he just doesn’t. Hope I can win this set, it would be a blessing!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Stephanie,
I understand this. I spent all of my 3rd child’s kindergarten year on learning letters (a few years before the All About Reading Pre-reading level was published), and at the end of the year he knew 6 of them. It was frustrating.

I do feel that the Pre-reading level would have made a difference for him, especially if we spent more than one day per Lesson so that we could really focus on the letter. He is 13 now, and in All About Spelling level 6, and we still review phonograms from level 1 periodically because he needs to do so. The key to long term retention for him is multisensory teaching (visual, auditory, and tactile) and on going review. We must review frequently when he first learns something, but we can never completely stop reviewing if we want him to retain it.

Let me know if you have any further questions or concerns. It can be difficult and frustrating, for both of you, to teach a kid that struggles in this way. Our Memory Report should be helpful to you.

Lindsey

says:

Love this idea.

Joanna Adams

says:

Love this idea. My second child has some sensory sensetivites, and giving her different sensory expiriences helps her. I love the thought of different textures as well!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Joanna,
If your daughter is up to it, you could make these together and allow her to choose which texture for each letter. Is H soft and fluffy? Maybe glue pulled apart cotton balls to it. Is O smooth and hard? You could cut it from a plastic lid and glue it on. You could take your time as you work through the letters, doing just one or two at a time so that she can really focus on each one.

Kayla

says:

This is an awesome idea!

Athena

says:

Such a great idea! Thank you for the download.

Brooke labak

says:

Thank you – love this!

Mariah

says:

These are great! When my son was little I bought some wooden rectangles and felt ABC stickers from Hobby Lobby to make my own also. I’ll have to print these out if I can’t find them after our move! Thanks for the freebie!

Kathryn F.

says:

I have not made these tactile letter cards but I’m going to! Great idea!! ๐Ÿค—

Tia Mayfield

says:

Love this! Gonna try and make these for my little this year.

roslyn harris

says:

These look great. I think I will make some for my 3 yr old! My math curriculum (right start) suggests making tactile number cards with sandpaper. I bet you could do that for letters also.

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Roslyn,
I’ve had people that have made letters from sandpaper say that gluing sand onto cards like this would be easier. I’d be inclined to print some cards for numbers too and do them this way as well.

Cissa

says:

Amazing Material! We are goinh to use this coming year and we are super excited!

E

says:

Love this! Thanks for the free download!

Sherica Jordan

says:

I love tactile letters. I wish I had found this post before I spent $40 on the wooden ones.

Amy C

says:

These are awesome!! Thanks for the download! My kids will love these!

Dee Anne

says:

Wow!! These are awesome. Thank you so much for the downloads and instructions for making the letters tactile. Can’t wait to use them:)

Dana

says:

I have a very eager four year old that will love these, thanks so much for the idea!

Jessica

says:

Very cute idea. Though I’d use something other than glitter. Haha

Jenny

says:

Can’t wait to try this out!

Judith Martinez

says:

I made a whole set with sandpaper when my older kids were little. They’ve since gotten lost or worn out. I need to make a new set for my youngest kids to use.

Whitney

says:

What an awesome resource! I’m excited to download and let my kids start playing (learning) with them. Thank you!

Hannah J

says:

That’s a great idea! I made my letters by cutting them out of sand paper. This looks easier!

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

Hannah,
I can’t decide if it would be good or bad for your scissors to cut sandpaper. Gluing on sand does seem easier.

Tristan

says:

My 2 year old loves the “that’s not my…” tactile books from unborn these would be great for him!!

andrea

says:

What a great idea! Thanks for sharing!

Jackie

says:

This is a *wonderful* idea! My 4 year old loves textures and is a very tactile learner. Thanks so much for sharing the download; I can’t wait to let him make these with different materials (peas, beans, sand, etc) to help him grasp the alphabet! :)

Robin E.

says: Customer Service

I made sand letters years and years ago for my 3rd child when he was a preschooler, and my 4th and 5th children enjoyed them too. These printables would have made them so much easier to make!

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